Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Tuesday said granting reservation to the Maratha community without touching the quota of other sections is the responsibility of his government and work is going on a war footing, reported news agency PTI.

Eknath Shinde was speaking to reporters in Kolhapur after taking the darshan of goddess Mahalaxmi at the famous Ambabai temple, reported PTI.

He said the rally addressed by Maratha quota activist Manoj Jarange in Thane city, the home turf of the chief minister, was not against him, reported PTI.

“He (Jarange) is going everywhere and meeting members of the Maratha community. The government`s stand (on the Maratha reservation) is firm. It is our responsibility to grant quota to Marathas and we are committed to this cause. It is the government`s responsibility to give reservation to the Maratha community without touching the quota of other sections and the work in this regard is going on a war footing,” Shinde said.

Jarange is spearheading the protests demanding the quota for Marathas in government jobs and education under the Other Backward Classes (OBC) grouping, which is opposed by OBC leaders including state minister Chhagan Bhujbal, reported PTI.

Jarange, who had observed hunger strikes on two occasions for the quota demand, had given a December 24 deadline to the government to act on his demands.

Earlier in the day, the quota activist appealed to the state government to pass the Maratha reservation bill in the upcoming winter session of the state legislature. He had earlier demanded convening a special session for the quota demand.

The chief minister said, “In the Marathwada region, the mention of Kunbi in the (genealogy) documents of Marathas is being found and Justice Shinde (retd) panel is doing its job. The government will give a reservation which will survive the test of law and fit in the framework of law”.

The Shinde panel was formed to scrutinise old documents (including those of the Nizam-era) where the Kunbi caste was mentioned, paving the way for the Maratha community to avail reservation benefits under the OBC category, reported PTI.

The Maharashtra government published an order in the last week of October directing officials concerned to issue fresh Kunbi caste certificates to eligible Maratha community members, reported PTI.

(With inputs from PTI)

Source link