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Maratha quota: Manoj Jarange refuses to end fast, calls meeting on Wednesday

Updated on: 20 February,2024 03:03 PM IST  |  Mumbai
mid-day online correspondent |

Maratha quota activist Manoj Jarange has called for meeting on Wednesday, and has reportedly refused to end his fast

Maratha quota: Manoj Jarange refuses to end fast, calls meeting on Wednesday

Manoj Jarange. File Pic

Maratha quota activist Manoj Jarange on Tuesday called for meeting on Wednesday, February 21 and has reportedly refused to end his fast, the ANI reported.

Manoj Jarange led the movement to provide caste-based reservations to Marathas and is on a hunger strike, welcomed the reservation bill introduced and passed in the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly on Tuesday, but contended that the reservation which has been proposed was not as per the community's demand, as per the ANI.

"We need reservation which we deserve, give us reservation under OBC to those who's proof of being kunbi has been found and those who don't have proof of kunbi, for them pass a law of "Sage Soyare"," Manoj Jarange said minutes after the Bill was passed unanimously by the Legislative Assembly, the ANI reported.

He has called for a meeting of the Maratha community at 12 noon on Wednesday.

Manoj Jarange is demanding one's blood relations should also be allowed to have Kunbi registration. Kunbi is a caste in Maharashtra under the OBC bloc. Jarange demanded that all people of the Maratha community be considered as Kunbi and be given reservations accordingly (under OBC Quota) but the government decided that only people having Nizam era documents of Kunbi certificates will get benefits under this.

"I appeal to all maximum people to reach Antarvali sarati for the meet ...I am firm on my demand to implement Sage Soyare...I welcome the reservation but the reservation which given are not as per our demand," Manoj Jarange said, according to the PTI.

"The reservation given by government will benifit only 100 -150 people of Maratha , our people will remain deprived from reservation..therefore I am demanding to implement "Sage Soyare" the next round of agitation will be announced tomorrow...We will take it what we deserve," he added.

Meanwhile, Manoj Jarange removed the intravenous drip from his hand and denied to take further treatment from the doctors.

The Maharashtra Legislative Assembly (lower house) unanimously passed the Maratha Reservation Bill tabled on Tuesday, which intended to extend 10 per cent reservation to Marathas above the 50 per cent cap.

The CM will now table the bill in the Legislative council for assent after which it becomes a law.

Leader of Opposition in Maharashtra Assembly, Vijay Wadettiwar, said the opposition parties were also of the same view that the Maratha community be given the reservation.

The state government has convened a one-day special session of the state legislature for tabling and further consideration of this special Bill.

The bill for the 10 per cent Maratha quota that the Mahayuti government of Eknath Shinde has approved on Tuesday is similar to the Socially and Educationally Backward Classes Act, 2018, introduced by the then Devendra Fadnavis government.

This is the third time in a decade that the state has introduced legislation for the Maratha quota.

"I am the CM of the state and I work with the blessings of all. We don't think on the basis of caste or religion. If such a situation comes with any other community, my stand as CM will be similar to what is my stand for the Maratha community. Our PM always says Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas," Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde said, according to the ANI.

"We all are of similar views here on the Maratha reservation so I will not make may political statement here. With the co-operation of you all, we could do it. I kept my promise which I made to the Maratha community. I thank all my colleagues including my both DCMs and other ministers. Today is a day of fulfilment of our promises," CM Shinde added after tabling the bill.

"Our aim was to work on a war footing, day and night, to bring this issue to a proper conclusion. The Maharashtra government is fully committed to giving reservation to the Marathas and today we are doing this. Devendra ji and Ajit Pawar ji always used to tell me that by whatever means we have to give reservation to the Maratha community. Devendra ji had once given reservation to the Maratha community while being the Chief Minister and that reservation was also upheld in the High Court. But unfortunately for some reason it was struck down by the honorable Supreme Court" the CM further stated.

"Therefore, this time we have reconstituted the Backward Classes Commission and conducted a survey as per the order of the Supreme Court and after collecting the necessary data, we are now planning to give them reservation. We have tried to fulfil the rules and regulations in every way and now we are ready to give this reservation," he added.

The reservation has been extended based on a report submitted to the state government by the Maharashtra Backward Class Commission (MBCC) headed by chairman Justice (Retired) Sunil Shukre.

The state already has a 10 per cent quota for the Economically Weaker Section (EWS) in which the Marathas are the biggest beneficiaries, claiming about 85 per cent of those.

The Maharashtra State Backward Class Commission on Friday submitted a report on the social and educational backwardness of the Maratha community for which it had undertaken a survey of around 2.5 crore homes within only nine days.

(with ANI inputs)

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