Boundary row: Govt to file review petition

The State government will file a review petition before the Supreme Court seeking a relook into its decision to appoint a court commissioner to record evidence on a petition filed by Maharashtra staking claim to 814 villages in Karnataka.

A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting, conveyed by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, of elected representatives both from ruling and opposition party, legal experts, litterateurs, thinkers, Kannada activists, among others to discuss the state’s boundary dispute with Maharashtra, in the City on Friday.

Litterateurs Chidananda Murthy, Chandrashekar Patil, legal experts Rama Jois, B V Acharya, Uday Holla, Ministers H K Patil and T B Jayachandra and others were present.

Briefing media after the meeting, Siddaramaiah said the government had already questioned the ‘maintainability’ of  a suit filed by Maharashtra before the Supreme Court in 2004 staking its claim to 814 villages in Belgaum, Uttara Kannada, Bidar and Gulbarga districts of the State.

The chief minister said the Supreme Court had recently appointed former chief justice of Jammu and Kashmir High Court Manmohan Sareen as court commissioner to record evidence from both parties and the State would soon file a review petition in this regard.

Siddaramaiah said that Maharashtra government’s case suffered from several infirmities as the Constitution had made it clear that Parliament was the sole forum to decide on boundaries of states. Besides, the report submitted by the Mahajan Commission in 1967 had made it clear that Belgaum belonged to Karnataka.

The meeting decided that another consultation meeting, in this regard, will be held in Belgaum in November.

All cases filed against Kannadigas who participated in agitations seeking protection of State’s boundary will be withdrawn, Siddaramaiah added.

To a query, whether the government was considering banning Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti (MES), Siddaramaiah said legal issues had to be taken into consideration.

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