Maharashtra Legislative Assembly
Maharashtra Legislative Assembly IANS

Maharashtra Legislature expresses solidarity with Marathi-speaking people on Karnataka border

Mumbai, December 27, 2022

In a much-anticipated development, the Maharashtra Legislature here on Tuesday adopted a resolution unanimously expressing full solidarity with the Marathi-speaking people living on the Karnataka border villages.

The resolution said the government will pursue the ongoing legal battle before the Supreme Court to merge the 865 Marathi-speaking villages with Maharashtra in Belagavi (Belgaum), Karwar, Nippani, Bidar, Bhalki and other towns and commit to include "each and every inch" of the lands there.

The state government will also urge the Centre to implement the decisions made at the recent meeting chaired by Union Home Minister Amit Shah with the Chief Ministers of Maharashtra Eknath Shinde and of Karnataka Basavaraj Bommai in New Delhi.

"The state government remains firmly and with full commitment with the Marathi-speaking people from the 865 villages," said the two-page resolution, moved by Shinde and adopted by the entire house with a voice vote and thumping desks.

With Speaker Rahul Narwekar in the Chair in the Assembly, Shinde, Leader of Opposition Ajit Pawar and other leaders reiterated their full commitment to stand by the six-decade old struggles of the Marathi-speaking people in the borders.

Coming amid Karnataka recently staking claims over certain other villages in Sangli and Solapur districts here, the resolution calls upon the Centre to reprimand that state and guarantee the security of the Marathi-speaking population living in the 865 villages there.

"Maharashtra has already respected the will of the Marathi-speaking people from 865 villages for their inclusion in the state. The government has provided a slew of amenities and facilities for social, education and economic development," said the resolution.

It added that the government has also provided other concessions like the benefits under the Chief Minister Relief Fund, special incentives for admissions to engineering and medical streams, pre-training for IAS, etc.

The Maha Vikas Aghadi allies like former Chief Minister and Shiv Sena (UBT) President Uddhav Thackeray, Congress state President Nana Patole and leaders of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and other parties heartily welcomed the passing of the resolution.

However, Thackeray questioned whether the Maharashtra government's initiatives shall be applicable to the Marathi-speaking people in Karnataka given that state's aggressive stance on the issue.

"We shall welcome any such resolution that is in Maharashtra's interests. We still demand that given the current circumstances the disputed boundary areas must be declared as Union Territory to protect the local Marathi-speaking people," Thackeray demanded.

The development came almost a week after the Karnataka Legislature adopted a similar resolution to safeguard its interests and condemned the boundary row that was created by the state, resulting in a political furore here with the Opposition MVA and others clamouring to bring up the resolution here on priority.

IANS

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