The protest held by Maratha community is not anti-Dalit says Vinayak Mete and Prakash Ambedkar.
Ever since the Maratha community had started agitation in various districts of Maharashtra there were reports about Dalits planning to organise similar protests to counter them. On the other hand, Shiv Sangram Chief Vinayak Mete clarified that Maratha protests are not anti-Dalit. It is not backed by any political outfit. Few days back, around 1,00,00 people had attended a rally in Parbhani for protesting against rape and murder of a 14 year old Maratha girl in Kopardi village of Ahmednagar district. Even though participants had claimed that the dharna was not backed by political outfits but many politicians have come forward to take mileage out of this incident. The Maratha community has been demanding job reservation and amendment of the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act 1989 for preventing its misuse. Five lakh people will hold dharna in Mumbai next month demanding security for women, punishment for Kopardi culprits and reservation for Marathas.
“The protests held by Marathas are not politically motivated. There has been talk in the political circles that this agitation is anti-Dalit which is not true. Political parties must refrain from politicising this incident for narrow selfish gains,” said Mete.
Even Bharip Bahujan Mahasangh leader Prakash Ambedkar said that this agitation should not be seen as a struggle between Dalits and Marathas. He added that Dalits should not come forward to hold agitation against Marathas.
“The RSS is trying to create tension between both the communities. The outfit has been saying that Marathas has been agitating against Dalits. They are trying to mislead people and are attempting to politicise this issue. The protests held by Marathas were peaceful and was organised to demand justice to the Kopardi rape victim,” said Ambedkar.
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has convened a meeting with Maratha leaders at his official bungalow Varsha to discuss about the protests held by Maratha community in various regions of the state. They also discussed about the impact of protests on the state government as BMC election will be held next year. So far the government has not come forward to resolve the grievances of the community.
The Maratha community will hold demonstrations at Nanded on 18th September, Jalna on 19th September, Sholapur and Navi Mumbai on 21st September, Ahmednagar on 23rd September, Pune on 27 September and Satara on 3rd October. The community accounts for nearly 33 per cent of the state’s population.