Maratha reservation activist Manoj Jarange called off his protest on Saturday as the Maharashtra government accepted his demands. Chief Minister Eknath Shinde met Jarange in Navi Mumbai, where Jarange is camping with thousands of protesters demanding reservation for his community.
Their meeting assumed significance as the Maharashtra government had come out with a draft ordinance regarding the reservation demands of Marathas on Friday night and a team of government officials met them at the camp site last night.
During his speech on Friday, Jarange had warned that if his demands were not met by Friday night, he and his supporters would enter Mumbai on Saturday for their planned protest at the Azad Maidan grounds. PTI informed of.
They also made a new demand that the government amend its free education policy to include all Marathas until the benefits of reservation are available to the entire community.
He has asked for data of 37 lakh Kunbi certificates issued by the state government. Kunbi, a farming community, falls in the Other Backward Class (OBC) category, and Jarange is demanding Kunbi certificate for all Marathas.
The activists suddenly came into limelight in September 2023 when the police used force to break up a mob on their indefinite fast at Antarwali Sarti village in Jalna district. They later began another round of fast, forcing the government to initiate talks with them.
The Maharashtra government had earlier enacted a law to provide reservation in admissions to government jobs and educational institutions to the politically as well as numerically dominant Maratha community, but it was struck down by the Supreme Court in 2021.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Shinde had earlier reiterated that his government is committed to providing reservation to Marathas without disturbing the existing quota of other communities.
The Chief Minister said, “My government will give reservation which will undergo legal scrutiny. A total of 1.4 lakh people are currently participating in the ongoing survey. They are working in three shifts. So far the discussions with Jarange have been positive.” Said.
Shinde had last month said that if necessary, a special session of the state legislature would be held in February to provide reservation to the Maratha community.
In October last year, the Maharashtra government published an order asking concerned authorities to issue new Kunbi caste certificates to eligible Maratha community members, paving the way for them to avail reservation benefits under the OBC category .
A government proposal (GR) asked officials to translate old documents containing references to Kunbis and written in Urdu and the ‘Modi’ script (which was used to write the Marathi language in earlier times). Said.
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