Maratha reservation stir: Protesters run rampage again; six state buses torched in Pune, violence erupts in Solapur

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New Delhi | Published: July 30, 2018 4:51:25 PM

Depsite Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis assuring the Maratha community that it is ready to sit and talk to them to resolve the issue through talks, the protests for reservation by the Maratha community have not ended.

 


The protest comes days after the government said that police charges would be taken back against the protestors and government is ready to talk with the community. (Protesters in Pune on Monday: ANI)

Depsite Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis assuring the Maratha community that it is ready to sit and talk to them to resolve the issue through talks, the protests for reservation by the Maratha community have not ended. On Monday, reports of fresh violence emerged from several areas of the state. Protesters in Pune vandalised buses, blocked roads and burned tyres in support of the demand. The police even laticharged protestors in Solapur. Seventy people are believed to have been taken into police custody. The administration has imposed Section 144 (prohibits assembly of more than 4 people in an area) in Chakan following violent protests.

The protest comes days after the government said that police charges would be taken back against the protestors and government is ready to talk with the community. However, the Maratha Kranti Morcha Coordination Committee announced a state-wide agitation starting August 1, while another outfit, the Maratha Coordination Committee has given a bandh call for July 30.

 

The fresh spurt in violence over the reservation demand by the Maratha community comes after the unfortunate incident of a man committing suicide in Aurangabad. The man allegedly committed suicide by jumping in front of a train. Acording to a report by India TV, the man has been identified as Pramod Patil, who posted about his suicide intent on Facebook.

“A Maratha is going today but at least do something for reservation,” reads the post written in Marathi. According to several media reports, the recent protests have witnessed at least four suicide incidents. Last week in Aurangabad, Kakasaheb Shinde, a 27-year-old protester, jumped off a bridge over Godavari River.

The latest incident comes after even when the Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had announced to convene a special session of the state Assembly to discuss the issue. On Sunday, Fadnavis held talks with a section of community leaders in Mumbai. During the talks, CM assured the Sakal Maratha organisation about the government’s commitment to the welfare of the community. However, after the meeting, the Maratha Coordination Committee gave a call for Bandh in Solapur on Monday, which was visible today.

With several Maratha groups refusing to make room at the dialogue table and announcing a fresh agitation to push for their demands, breaking the deadlock continues to be a challenge for the Fadnavis government. A report in The Indian Express said that the Maratha Kranti Morcha committee had on Sunday met in Latur where a two-day ultimatum was given to the state government to enforce a decision on Maratha reservation. A leader of the outfit told the daily that the CM holding talks wouldn’t change their plans.

He said that this time, every district is planning its own agenda. “There is no uniformity,” he said, adding that while some were ready for talks with the government, others had doubts over the government’s intentions.

Meanwhile, the Congress party after conducting a meeting of their MLAs & senior party leaders on Monday, has written to Governor Vidyasagar Rao to intervene in the matter of ask the state government to expedite its efforts for providing 16% reservation to Maratha community.

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