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Setback to Maratha Reservation?

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A group of students in Maharashtra has threatened to launch an agitation over the Bombay High Court’s ruling that the 16 per cent quota offered to Marathas will not be applicable on admissions to post-graduate medical courses this year. It is a setback for Maratha Reservation. Though, the Maharashtra government has knocked on the door of the Supreme Court.

Around 250 students have been affected by the ruling given by the Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court last week, Suyash Patil, who recently took admission in a Pune based medical college, claimed on Tuesday. The state has filed a petition against the High Court ruling in the Supreme Court, which is likely to hear the matter on Friday, a government official said.

A representative of the students affected by the High Court ruling said if the state government failed to resolve the matter, they would launch an agitation.

The state government on March 8 wrote a letter to the Directorate of Medical Education and Research to incorporate the quota under the Socially and Economically Backward Classes (SEBC) category from the 2019 academic session in the PG medical courses.

The Nagpur bench of the HC last week said the March 8 notification shall not be applicable to the admission process, which had started earlier.

In view of the HC’s order, some of the Maratha community students who could not get admission to the postgraduate medical courses approached the state government which subsequently moved the Supreme Court.

“We have decided to wait for the Supreme Court’s ruling. If the state fails to come up with an amicable solution, we will organise a state-wide agitation,” a representative of the affected students said.

Since the Maratha students got admissions this year under the SEBC category, they did not think of applying for seats elsewhere or outside the state, Suyash Patil said.

“But with this HC ruling, our admissions are likely to be cancelled and the time limit to seek admissions in other colleges is also over. We fear losing an entire year if the Supreme Court backs the HC ruling,” he said.

A group of affected students also met Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Monday, requesting him to take steps to resolve the issue.

On November 30, 2018, the Maharashtra legislature passed a bill proposing 16 per cent reservation for Marathas in government jobs and education under the SEBC category.

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