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Home > Mumbai > Mumbai News > Article > Maratha quota activist Manoj Jarange slams Ajit Pawar for his silence on issue

Maratha quota activist Manoj Jarange slams Ajit Pawar for his silence on issue

Updated on: 22 January,2024 02:29 PM IST  |  Mumbai
mid-day online correspondent |

Maratha quota activist Manoj Jarange expressed disappointment that Deputy CM Ajit Pawar should have questioned delay in awarding quotas.

Maratha quota activist Manoj Jarange slams Ajit Pawar for his silence on issue

Manoj Jarange/ File Photo

On Monday, activist Manoj Jarange voiced disappointment, claiming that Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar should have questioned the state government's tardiness in awarding quotas to Marathas. Jarange, who was heading a march to Mumbai, chastised Pawar for failing to speak out on the Maratha reservation issue.

On January 20, Jarange and thousands of followers began their march from Antarwali Sarti village in Jalna district. The march will end in Mumbai, where Jarange intends to fast indefinitely until the state government releases an order granting reservation to the Maratha community.

The activist's demand is for Marathas to be granted Kunbi certificates, which will allow them to receive reservations in government jobs and education under the Other Backward Class (OBC) category.

"Ajit Pawar should have confronted the state government about the Maratha reservation issue. He should have inquired as to why the reservation had not been granted sooner. However, he is speaking out against the problem," Jarange said.

Jarange has criticised Ajit Pawar, who rebelled against his uncle Sharad Pawar and joined the Eknath Shinde-BJP government in the state, for his stance on Maratha reservation.

Jarange warned of "serious consequences" if the state administration tried to use force against his rallies. He emphasised that the movement is in line with democratic values, and he is requesting permission to hold a sit-in agitation in Mumbai.

The activist expressed willingness to engage in talks with the state government representatives, urging them to understand the issues faced by the Maratha community.

"This agitation cannot be defused any longer. Holding rallies and marching for our demands falls within the framework of democracy. I have even sought permission for a sit-in agitation in Mumbai," he told PTI. 

Jarange's march is expected to continue, with plans to start a hunger strike in Mumbai on January 26. Chief Minister Eknath Shinde announced that the state commission for backward classes would survey from January 23 to assess the social, economic, and educational backwardness of the Maratha community. Shinde appealed to Jarange not to head to Mumbai, citing ongoing efforts by the commission.

The state government has also proposed a special assembly session in February to address the Maratha reservation issue.

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