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Congress would take on the Devendra Fadnavis government in Maharashtra aggressively on the issues of drought and denial of reservation to Muslims during the budget session of the state legislature, scheduled to start from March 9, it said today. Leader of opposition in the Assembly Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil today said the previous Congress-NCP government had given five per cent reservations to Muslims not on the criterion of religion but because of the community's backwardness. He was speaking after a meeting of party legislators. In the winter session, Fadnavis had said he would seek advocate general's opinion on Muslim reservation and take a decision in a month's time, he pointed out. "The decision is yet to come and we have sought appointment with the Chief Minister to discuss the issue," the senior Congress leader said. The new government got a bill passed that gave reservation to Marathas but left out Muslims during the winter session last month.
An earlier ordinance issued by the Congress-NCP government included both the communities. Vikhe Patil also said the party had decided to strengthen co-ordination among the opposition parties. "In the districts where Congress does not have MLAs, it has been decided to appoint Members of Legislative Council as guardian legislators to co-ordinate with local unit to strengthen the party organisation. MLAs should also co-ordinate with the district units for organisational work," he added. MLAs were also instructed to communicate about issues awaiting government clearance in their constituencies to his office, so that these issues could be raised in the session, he said. Out of the 42 MLAs and 21 MLCs of the party, only about 30 legislators were present for the meeting today.