In a video message on X, the Leader of Opposition in the Assembly also alleged the Eknath Shinde government was running away from such an exercise
Vijay Wadettiwar. File Pic
Maharashtra Congress leader Vijay Wadettiwar on Monday said the state government must conduct a "caste census" on the lines of the one being done in Bihar, reported news agency PTI.
In a video message on X, the Leader of Opposition in the Assembly also alleged the Eknath Shinde government was running away from such an exercise.
बिहार सरकारचे अभिनंदन करतो, त्यांनी जातीनिहाय जनगणना केली आणि आकडे जाहीर केले.— Vijay Wadettiwar (@VijayWadettiwar) October 2, 2023
बिहारच्या धर्तीवर महाराष्ट्रात जातीनिहाय जनगणना करावी.
याचा कालबध्द कार्यक्रम महायुती सरकारने जाहीर करावा.
राज्यातील विविध समाजाचे आरक्षणाचे प्रश्न समोर आले असताना जातीनिहाय जनगणना हाच एक उपाय आहे.… pic.twitter.com/6dtPVFdPPG
"On the lines of Bihar government's decision to carry out caste-wise census, Maharashtra government should also do the same. I do not understand why the Maharashtra government is running away from replicating such a census here in the state. Our leader Rahul Gandhi has consistently made the demand for caste-wise census in the country," he said on X.
"I feel it is unfortunate for the state government of CM Eknath Shinde, deputy chief ministers Devendra Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar if it is running away from such a census exercise," he added.
Wadettiwar said Rahul Gandhi had also demanded the Centre reveal details of the caste survey carried out in 2011 when the UPA was in power under Dr Manmohan Singh. The Centre must clarify why details of this 2011 exercise has been kept under wraps.
He also accused the Maharashtra government of wasting time over reservations for Other Backward Classes and alleged it was not giving data to support quota for the community in local bodies.
"On one hand, you (BJP) carry out the OBC Jaagar (awareness) Yatra but at the same time you deny people basic information such as details of the caste-wise census. Is the RSS blocking the caste census? The Maharashtra government should clarify its stand on it," Wadettiwar said.
The Bharatiya Janata Party's 'OBC Jaagar Yatra' was launched on Monday by its state unit chief Chandrashekhar Bawankule.
Earlier, amid the ongoing reservation dispute in Maharashtra, the Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly, Vijay Wadettiwar, made allegations on Saturday that his counterpart in the Legislative Council and Shiv Sena (UBT) leader, Ambadas Danve, possesses an Other Backward Classes (OBC) certificate despite being a Maratha, stated a PTI report.
Wadettiwar's Congress party and the Shiv Sena (UBT), to which Danve belongs, are allies both in the Maha Vikas Aghadi and the opposition bloc Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA). In recent weeks, several groups have been protesting, urging that Marathas not be included in the OBC category for reservation purposes.
Addressing reporters, the Congress leader claimed that approximately 28 lakh individuals in Marathwada had surreptitiously obtained OBC caste certificates in exchange for money.
According to the report, responding to these allegations, Danve categorically stated that he does not possess an OBC caste certificate and challenged Wadettiwar to provide evidence. In a released statement, Danve said, "All allegations against me are entirely baseless. If he (Wadettiwar) possesses such information, then he should present proof publicly. This will bring the truth to light."
Danve emphasized the need for Wadettiwar to first acquire accurate information before levelling such accusations.
Asserting his affiliation as a proud Shiv Sainik, Danve clarified, "I am not a leader associated with any particular caste and have never availed benefits of any reserved position. I have been selected from the 'open category,' starting from my tenure as a corporator to my role as the Leader of the Opposition in the Council."
(With inputs from PTI)