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Fadnavis announces panel to look into issues of Marathas

Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said his government will set up a high-profile panel to look into the issues raised by the Maratha community that took out a silent march.

Fadnavis, who is camping in Nagpur, Maharashtra’s “second capital” where the Winter Session of the state legislature is in progress, said the proposed panel will have experts and intellectuals to study the issues raised by the community.

Addressing a delegation that called on him, he said the services of retired higher and lower court judges from the community, professors and other intellectuals will be availed for preparing a detailed report.

A suggestion in this regard was made by Education Minister Vinod Tawde.

This is for the first time that Marathas, who have taken out big rallies across the state in the last two months demanding reservation in education and jobs and amendments to the Atrocities Act, presented a memorandum directly to the CM, departing from the practice of handing it over to district collectors.

Revenue Minister Chandrakant Patil said the panel may include 10 or more members and will meet in Mumbai soon.

Fadnavis said the issue of reservation for Marathas is pending before court and the government has roped in top lawyer Harish Salve to fight the case.

The government recently filed a 2500-page affidavit before the Bombay High Court, supporting the demand for 16 per cent reservation for the community in jobs and education.

Referring to the affidavit, the chief minister said he himself gave the final touch to it and it may come up for hearing on December 30.

“The affidavit is based on various documents and historical evidence,” he said.

The chief minister said noted lawyer Ujjwal Nikam is representing the government in the Kopardi rape and murder case.

“He (Nikam) has carefully drafted papers and the charge-sheet has been filed in a fast track court. The court is likely to start the trial on a day-to-day basis from December 20,” he said.

Fadnavis said Dalit leaders have been apprised of the alleged misuse of the Prevention of Atrocities Act.

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