As the government grapples with the Maratha quota issue without a concrete solution, Manoj Jarange-Patil, the leader of the agitation in Jalna district, is anticipating a government emissary to bring a resolution regarding the Maratha quota.
Jarange-Patil commented, "I saw the Chief Minister and others speaking at the press conference after today's meeting. However, we shall wait for official communication from the government before deciding on the agitation. The agitation will intensify if the official representatives don't come with a Government Resolution for the Maratha Quota," in response to CM Shinde's appeal to the community during the press conference.
He added, "Although the Chief Minister didn't explicitly state it in the press conference, I am confident that the government has reached some conclusion, and the officials expected to come from them will bring a government resolution on the issue."
When asked about his thoughts on the meeting, he reiterated, "The documents proclaiming the victory of the community will soon be in our hands."
Jarange-Patil has been on a hunger strike for over a week now. While he had been consuming water after the lathi charge incident last Friday and visits from several political leaders thereafter, he indicated that he would stop consuming water too if the government emissary comes 'empty-handed.'
Meanwhile, the Maratha quota agitation in Maharashtra escalated on Monday, with several community groups taking to the streets in Baramati district, demanding action against police excesses on them. The protesters were furious over the lathi charge on quota protesters in Jalna a few days ago. They demanded the removal of Ajit Pawar from the BJP-Shiv Sena government.
Despite the Eknath Shinde government's apology to the quota agitators to control the damage, both the agitators and opposition parties reiterated their allegations.
The clarification from Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis came following direct accusations from prominent Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Sanjay Raut, who claimed that the lathi charge orders were given by the Maharashtra CM and the home minister's office. Moments later, the same accusation was repeated by NCP leader Anil Deshmukh, who claimed that protesters were lathi-charged on the instructions of the Home Ministry.
Subsequently, a bandh call was issued by the Maratha Kranti Morcha, with support from the Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena (UBT) and the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM). Workers of Shiv Sena (UBT) and AIMIM, along with members of social organizations, gathered at Karnti Chowk in Aurangabad as part of the shutdown and protested against police actions in Jalna.