Mumbai: The NCP (Ajit Pawar faction) MLA from Beed Prakash Solanke has said that the attack on his home was pre-planned.
"I also want the Maratha community to get the reservation. But, the attack on my home was pre-planned," Solanke said at a press conference here on Thursday. His home at Majalgaon near Beed was burnt down by alleged Maratha activists on Monday.
While talking about the incident, Solanke said, "There was a mob of over 300 persons, including teachers and even people with illegal occupations. The mob had sharp weapons, big stones, petrol bombs etc. and their intention was clearly to kill me." He also pointed out that at least 21 of the persons arrested for the attack belong to communities other than Maratha and even political opponents.
“My comments were taken in wrong spirit”: Solanke
“The issue of Maratha reservation has been discussed for over two months now. Agitations are going on all across the state. The condition is a bit more serious in Beed district. Jarange-Patil has been working on the issue since 2011. The whole Maratha community has gathered under his leadership now. He is a very honest and dedicated person. I too have supported the agitation, but my comments that Jarange-Patil is an ordinary person were taken in the wrong spirit,” Solanke said while expressing dismay over the incident of burning down his home.
"When the incident took place on October 30, I was there at my home. Majalgaon was closed down. Around 5,000 young men were appealing to people to shut down everything. At around 10.30 am some of them came to my house and told me that some of the mob might come to stage demonstrations at your home. Yet I stayed put. I thought I should have a word with them. But, as they came they started pelting stones at my home. The mob included political opponents and people with criminal backgrounds," Solanke added.
“Beed police remained mere spectators”
"Police have given the CCTV footage. But, I've asked them to take action only against the miscreants and not against all," he added. He also blamed the Beed police for the incident. "They remained mere spectators during the incident. I feel their morale is down. we need to boost it up," he said.
He also said that a time bound program is needed for Maratha reservation and appealed to the state government to explain to the people how they will give the reservation to the community.
Solanke, who started his political career from the panchayat samiti elections had worked on district level for a long time before getting elected as MLA in 1987 . He was also a minister of state. His father too was a minister between 1967 to 1980, he said during the press conference while emphasizing on how his family had been getting the support of the people.