Mumbai | Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Wednesday said the all-party meeting held earlier in the day decided that reservation should be given to the Maratha community without tampering with the existing quotas of other communities in the state.
Speaking to reporters here, Shinde also appealed activist Manoj Jarange, who is on hunger strike for Maratha reservation since October 25, to call off his fast and give the government some time.
“It was decided unanimously at the all-party meeting that the state should make efforts for securing Maratha reservation without touching the existing quotas of other communities. I appeal and request Manoj Jarange to withdraw his fast and cooperate with the government. The state needs some time to prepare for the curative petition filed in the Supreme Court,” Shinde said.
The government is working on two fronts -- issuing Kunbi caste certificates to Marathas from Marathwada (so that they can avail of OBC reservation) and preparing an error-free submission as part of the curative petition filed in the apex court, he said.
“The all-party meeting also expressed its disappointment over the violent incidents reported in the last few days. Such violent acts would be a blot on the Maratha community's agitation for reservation. The state government needs some time to prepare a submission that will pass the legal test,” he said.
“The state government is making honest efforts so that the Maratha community gets reservation benefits. The backward class commission is working on a war footing. The reservation given by the government when Devendra Fadnavis was chief minister was upheld by the Bombay High Court but struck down by the Supreme Court on the grounds of some errors. We want to avoid a repetition of this situation,” Shinde added.
Making an appeal to Jarange, the chief minister said he should trust the government's efforts. "Because of some violent incidents, the common man should not have any safety concerns. The entire Maratha community should support the state government,” he said.