The age-old demand to include Maratha community in the Other Backward Classes (OBC) is all set to stir up the Maharashtra’s politics once again. Around 15 organisations representing the Maratha community held a protest march here on Thursday threatening the government to face consequences if the demand is not accepted.
The State government has formed a committee to look into their demands. The committee will be headed by Industries Minister Narayan Rane and expected to submit its report in two months.
However, the 22nd report of the State Backward Classes Commission headed by Justice R.M. Bapat had categorically rejected the Maratha demand in 2008.
The demand has been tacitly supported by the Nationalist Congress Party , which is considered as the dominant Maratha party. The panel led by Congress Minister is also seen as an attempt to tame its alliance partner over the issue.
Chhatrapati Sambhajiraje Bhosle, one of the organisers of the protest march, warned the ruling Congress-NCP coalition that if the demand to include Maratha community in the OBC category was not accepted then both the parties would have to pay the price in upcoming Assembly elections.
“Ruling coalition should not ignore our demands. We will not think twice before bringing out our swords if it needs to,” he said.