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Maratha rallies: CM Devendra Fadnavis starts talks with Opposition leaders

Committee comprising ruling and Opposition leaders to be set up to visit every district to address problems of the community

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
September 27, 2016 2:31:38 am
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Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has started holding discussions with Opposition leaders in the Legislative Assembly and the Legislative Council to discuss the problems of the Maratha community. The government is planning to reach out to every district to address the concerns of the community.

Highly placed sources in the government said Fadnavis had held talks with Leader  of Opposition in the Assembly Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil
and Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Dhananjay Munde.

Earlier, the CM had appealed to the Kranti Maratha Morcha to come forward for a dialogue with the government.

However, the dilemma before the Kranti Maratha Morcha is how to constitute a committee for the purpose as each district has a set of different local leadership. Moreover, leaders from established parties such as Congress and NCP who are supporting the rallies cannot be the face of the morcha that had disallowed them from taking the centre stage during its silent rallies.

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A morcha office-bearer said, “Ideally, Fadnavis’s discussions with Opposition leaders of assembly and council should be a good move. These are constitutional posts and the talks would signal representation of all party members.”

The government wants to constitute a committee comprising Opposition leaders, ministers and elected representatives to visit every district. The all-party committee would appeal to members of the Maratha community to come forward for discussions and to air their grievances.

Taking note of the demands submitted to district collectors by five volunteers at the end of every Maratha rally, Fadnavis has given directives to work out a strategy to address their problems.

A senior government functionary said, “There is no justification for the Maratha community to raise the issue of reservation. From Day One, the chief minister has indicated that the government is in favour of reservation for Marathas. It has even collected valid documents to strengthen its argument in favour of Maratha reservation so that it withstands constitutional and legal challenge in the court.”

Secondly, he added, review of atrocities Act did not come under the state government’s jurisdiction. “The Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe Prevention of Atrocities Act was framed by Parliament. If it needs any review, Parliament will have to intervene,” he said.

No question of changing CM: Patil

Public Works Department Minister Chandrakant Patil Monday ruled out any leadership change in Maharashtra. The statement came in response to a question on whether the BJP was considering a change in leadership following Maratha rallies across the state.

Patil said, “Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has not done anything wrong to warrant change. And it is not in the culture of the party to change the leadership on caste factor.”

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