Published On : Tue, Dec 26th, 2017

Inspired by Patidar agitation, Marathas to resume demand for reservation

Mumbai: Angry over the government’s failure to respond to their demands, Maratha community outfits have announced that they will restart their agitation, this time on the birth anniversary of Maratha warrior king Shivaji, on February 19.

Drawing inspiration from the successful Patidar agitation in Gujarat, the community has warned that it will resort to similar methods to showcase its strength ahead of the 2019 Maharashtra state polls.

In a state-level meeting held in Panvel on Monday, community leaders decided to name their new agitation ‘19 se 2019 tak’ — from Shivaji’s birth anniversary to the Lok Sabha and assembly elections in 2019. The government has failed to fulfil its promise to meet the community’s demands within four months, the leaders added, referring to the resolution that was reached after protests culminated in a silent march on August 9.

Their demands include reservation as part of the Other Backward Class (OBC) category in government jobs and institutes of higher education, strengthening of the Annasaheb Patil Financially Backward Development Corporation that was launched a year ago by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“We have decided to adopt different forms of agitation, by moving on from silent marches, if our demands are not met by February 10. Patidars have shown their strength in assembly elections in Gujarat. We … are set to showcase our power,” said Virendra Pawar, one of the conveners.

“Not a single hostel has been approved for Marathas. A year after the launch of a financially backward development corporation by the PM, a president has still not been appointed. The government has also failed to make the State Backward Class Commission submit its report,” Pawar said.

—As published in Hindustan Times