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Instruct Maharashtra govt to decide on quota: Congress to guv


Press Trust of India Mumbai
The BJP-led government in Maharashtra is "dilly-dallying" on the issue of reservation for the Maratha community in jobs and education, the Congress said today and sought the governor's intervention in the matter.
The state government is "dilly-dallying" in proffering reservation to the Marathas and some other communities, the opposition party said and asked Governor Vidyasagar Rao to instruct it to take decisions in this regard immediately.
A delegation led by state Congress chief Ashok Chavan met Rao this afternoon and asked him to instruct the Devendra Fadnavis government to immediately withdraw cases recently filed against "innocent" Maratha quota agitators.
In a memorandum to the governor, the party said the government would be blamed if the law and order situation in the state deteriorates if a decision on the quota issue is not announced immediately.
The delegation included Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil and former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan.
"The position of the BJP and the Shiv Sena over quota is vague. Therefore, no concrete decision has been taken on reservations to Marathas, Muslim, Dhangar, Mahadev Koli and Lingayat communities. The government wants to keep these issues pending," the memorandum said.
"In such a scenario, we urge you to intervene and instruct the government to declare its decisions regarding reservations of these communities without any delay," it added.
The delegation noted the Maharashtra State Backward Classes Commission is yet to submit its report on the "socio- economic backwardness" of the Marathas to the Bombay High Court, which is hearing the quota matter.
The commission's report has been delayed for around six months as the government did not provide enough fund and manpower to the panel, the opposition party alleged.
Similarly, the Congress leaders alleged the government submitted the affidavit explaining its position on the issue of Maratha reservation as late as a year-and-a-half.
"The High Court had rapped the government during a hearing on June 29, 2018 and instructed the commission to expedite its work. Despite that no urgency is being seen on part the government," the memorandum said.
The opposition party said the government is citing the excuse of the Maratha quota issue being sub-judice to act in the case.
But, it charged, the government is not implementing the previous Congress-NCP government's decision to give 5 per cent reservation to Muslims in education "despite the High Court validating it".
"Therefore, there is a sentiment across the state that the government's excuse of the (Maratha quota) matter being sub-judice is a mere eyewash," the memorandum said.
The Congress charged the government with "hoodwinking" Dhangar, Mahadev Koli and Lingayat communities. The absence of any decision on the quota issue threatens peace and communal harmony in the state, the party said.
Before calling on the governor, Congress legislators met at Vidhan Bhawan here to discuss the party's strategy on the Maratha quota issue.
The MLAs also paid tributes to the victims of the last Saturday's bus accident in adjoining Raigad district.
Thirty staff members of an agriculture university at Dapoli were killed when their bus fell in a gorge at Ambenali Ghat near Poladpur town. The staff members were going on a picnic to Mahabaleshwar in Satara district.

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First Published: Jul 30 2018 | 8:20 PM IST

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