Recalling the rich history of the Dhangar community (shepherds) in Maharashtra, BJP MLC Gopichand Padalkar demanded Isapur dam on the Painganga river should be named after ‘Adyakrantiveer Navasajiraje Naik' and Parli Ahilya Express as ‘Dharmajiraje Munde Express’ to respect the Vanjari community.
Navasajiraje Naik fought against the British and Nizam and established his own rule in a small section of the Marathwada region. Dharmajiraje Munde from Beed too fought against the British single-handedly.
The BJP leader said that the land of Parli-Vaijanath in the Beed district belongs to many revolutionaries and reformers. “Punyashlok Ahilyabai Holkar, Sant Bhagwan Baba came from this land. We know the struggle by late Gopinath Munde saheb for this land,” he said.
Padalkar was speaking at Dabeli village on the occasion of Shaurya Din. He was accompanied by descendants of Navasajiraje Naik and Dharmajiraje Munde.
Padalkar lamented that the rich history and culture of the land never became a part of the mainstream narrative. “The villagers here know how Dharmaji Munde fought the battle against the British and Nizam. Then why is it not known at the state or national level? Why is it not a part of the syllabus and why does this Vangari hero not reflect in research works? It just shows that the establishment has some bias towards us. Ramoshi, Koli, Vanjari, Hangar, Bhilla communities had fought against Nizam at the same time. But have you heard their names in Marathwada Mukti Sangram? No,” he said.
The BJP leader shed some light on these communities' past contributions. "These communities fought together, especially Vangari and Dhangar. Navasaji Naik and Dharmaji Naik fought together. This would be an inspiration for people from the community today and would fight against the established politicians,” he said.
Therefore, he expressed the need to narrate the real history of these communities and honour the heroes. “We would come together- Vangari and Dhangar. My Vangari brothers are politically mature and Dhangar are demanding their right share in politics. It is known that our alliance makes history. So, I demand that Isapur dam on Painganga river should be named after ‘Adyakrantiveer Navasajiraje Naik' who had ruled landnear the river. Parli Ahilya Express as ‘Dharmajiraje Munde Express’ to respect the Vanjari community,” he said.