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Maratha Kranti Morcha launches fresh stir for reservation demand

The fresh stir, 'Samwad Yatra', comes amid assurances given by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis that the process of granting quota to the Maratha community would be completed by December 1

Press Trust of India  |  Mumbai 

Maharashtra bandh

The Maratha Kranti Morcha and other allied outfits in Maharashtra on Friday launched a yatra in support of its demand for reservation in government jobs and education for the community under the OBC category.

The fresh stir, 'Samwad Yatra', comes amid assurances given by Chief Minister that the process of granting quota to the would be completed by December 1.

The Kranti Morcha, which spearheaded the quota stir in the past, fears that reservation under the 'Maratha community' head will not stand in courts and thus it is seeking benefits under the Other Backward Classes (OBC) category.

Morcha leaders have, meanwhile, assured the has no intention of snatching reservation benefits given to groups falling under the existing OBC category.

"We want the Fadnavis government to include us in the OBC category and not push for our reservation as members.

"This can be achieved by expanding reservation limit of the state which currently stands at 52 per cent," said Shantaram Kunjir, a morcha coordinator heading the 'Samwad Yatra'.

Raghunath Chitre-Patil, a Morcha convener, said in 2014, the Congress-Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) government had approved a 16 per cent quota for Marathas in jobs and education, but it could not stand judicial scrutiny.

Vinod Patil, a pro-quota activist, urged for extending the state's reservation limit to ensure fairness to OBCs and preserve inter-caste harmony.

"The OBC category constitutes 32 per cent of the total reservation. We are demanding a quota under the OBC category, but not at the cost of eating into reservation of the other economically and socially backward communities," Vinod Patil said.

"Thus, the government must expand the reservation limit by including the Marathas under a separate OBC category. Say for instance, if the backwards classes under the OBC category are collectively labelled 'A', then the Marathas may be labelled as 'A1' under the same category," Vinod Patil added.

As part of Samwad Yatra, members of the Kranti Morcha and other outfits plan to gherao the Vidhan Bhavan here on November 26 if the state government failed to complete the requisite steps to allow quota to the community.

First Published: Fri, November 16 2018. 22:20 IST