Mumbai: The pro-Maratha reservation protests by MLAs and MLCs of all parties, especially the NCP (Ajit Pawar faction), at the main Mantralaya gate two days ago has irked Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, whose displeasure was evident at the meeting on Friday evening.
Sources said that even as Shinde was trying make activist Manoj Jarange-Patil withdraw his fast and doomsayers were painting a picture of Maharashtra on fire, the Ajit Pawar group leaders Nilesh Lanke and Amol Mitkari were shouting slogans like ‘Marathas should get reservation’ and ‘Maratha reservation is our right’.
NCP (Ajit Pawar) Faction Leaders Demand Decision At The Earliest
As reported by The Free Press Journal, Mitkari had said, “The women’s reservation bill was passed in a special parliament session, so another session should be called to resolve the Maratha issue. Our government had sought 40 days to give clarity on this issue, but as the deadline has passed, the final decision should be taken as early as possible.”
NCP MLA from Majalgaon, Prakash Solanke, directly targeted state home minister Devendra Fadnavis, bringing internal fissures in the MahaYuti government to the fore. At the meeting on Friday, Shinde made no bones about the need for MahaYuti to be together at a time when the alliance is most needed. He said that they should stand united and be by the side of the government in times of crisis.
Two days ago, the protesting group of MLAs and MLCs had locked the main gate of the Mantralaya building and shouted slogans favouring Maratha reservation. They gave the government an ultimatum that it should take a decision and give reservation to Marathas, or else they wouldn’t allow the Mantralaya to function.