Maratha Reservation stir: 'Nothing can be done till November 15'

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Mumbai:

Dampening the mood of Maratha quota protesters ahead of Thursday’s state-wide bandh, a senior Maharashtra minister on Wednesday said “nothing can be done” on their demand till November 15.

Nothing can be done till November 15, the deadline for submission of the report by the Maharashtra State Commission for the Backward Classes which has been tasked with coming up with a time-bound programme on implementing quota for the Maratha community, Revenue Minister Chandrakant Patil said.

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The BJP leader told reporters at Miraj in Sangli district that the commission has sought time till November 15 and as a result, the government can’t take any decision regarding the demand of Maratha community for reservation in education and government jobs.

The commission has received 1.87 lakh memoranda and suggestions, which need to be studied in detail. Some of them are as long as 300 pages, he said. “Private agencies appointed by the state government also carried out surveys in five tehsils of each district,” he said.

“The commission is an autonomous body and the state government cannot force it to expedite its report,” Patil said.

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Thursday marks the second anniversary of the Maratha mobilisation that started in Marathwada in 2016 and culminated in pro-quota protests across the state.

Last month, Patil had apologised to Maratha bodies over his remarks on the ongoing quota stir, which he said were twisted.

The minister had earlier said some ‘paid’ people were trying to defame the agitation by infiltrating it.

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