Maratha Reservation Agitation: Activist Manoj Jarange-Patil Sets December 24 Ultimatum; Threatens Fast If Deadline Unmet

Maratha Reservation Agitation: Activist Manoj Jarange-Patil Sets December 24 Ultimatum; Threatens Fast If Deadline Unmet

Jarange-Patil stated in Pune that he was clear that the deadline was December 24 and that there would be no change in the date.

Raja Mane S BalakrishnanUpdated: Monday, November 20, 2023, 09:33 PM IST
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Manoj Jarange-Patil | Twitter

Activist Manoj Jarange-Patil, who is spearheading the agitation for reservation in government jobs and education for the Maratha community, has made it clear that he will not wait beyond December 24, 2023 for the Maharashtra government to take a decision on the vexed issue. Recently, a delegation from the government which met him claimed that the deadline was January 2, 2024.

Jarange-Patil stated in Pune that he was clear that the deadline was December 24 and that there would be no change in the date. He said he would resume his fast if reservation was not granted to Marathas by December 24. The government is working overtime to find a way out of the imbroglio. The situation is complicated by the fact that the OBCs led by state cabinet minister Chhagan Bhujbal have made it clear that reservation for the Marathas cannot be at the cost of their quota.

'Let good sense prevail among all leaders except one'

In Pune Jarange-Patil offered prayers at the famed Dagdu Sheth Ganpati temple. When asked by reporters what he prayed for at the temple he said, "I prayed that let good sense prevail among all leaders except one." He did not specify who the exception was. But it is well known that he and other leaders of the agitation have been targeting deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis of the BJP. In fact, NCP leaders Sharad Pawar and his daughter Supriya Sule, MP, have been openly calling for the resignation of Fadnavis.

Lathicharge orders not given by Fadnavis, RTI reveals

Meanwhile, Bachhu Kadu, MLA, called on Jarange-Patil in a bid to apprise himself of the latest development. Kadu later said that he would arrange for a meeting between chief minister Eknath Khadse and Jarange-Patil and remove the confusion over the date of the deadline.

In a significant development, the police have stated in reply to an RTI application that the order to lathi charge Maratha protestors in Jalna on September 1 was not given by Fadnavis, who holds the home portfolio. Mr Sharad Pawar and other Maratha leaders have blamed Mr Fadnavis, who is a Brahmin, for the lathicharge in which several Marathas were injured. About 40 policemen too were injured in the violence indulged in by the protestors.

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