Maharashtra Assembly adjourned briefly in support of Belgaum cause

Maharashtra Assembly adjourned briefly in support of Belgaum cause

 The State Legislative Assembly was adjourned for one-and-half hours today to express solidarity with Marathi-speaking people from Belgaum, seeking inclusion of Marathi-dominated areas on the Karnataka border into Maharashtra.

Marathi-speaking people from Belgaum in Karnataka are staging dharna at the Azad Maidan here to draw attention to their long-pending demand.The issue was raised by PWP legislator Ganpatrao Deshmukh through a point of order after the question hour.

He said he was not opposing the state government's decision to give 2 TMC water from Doodhganga and Warana dams to Karnataka. However, the long-pending demand is yet unresolved and Maharashtra should once again rise unitedly to show solidarity with people "fighting the 56-year-old struggle against Karnataka government's atrocities against the linguistic minorities."

The demand was supported by BJP's Girish Bapat, Bala Nandgaonkar (MNS), Jitendra Awahad (NCP) and Industries Minister Narayan Rane spoke on behalf of the Congress.
They even agreed to the proposal to adjourn the House so that all legislators cutting across party lines can visit Azad Maidan and express solidarity with people from Belgaum in their fight.

Awhad said the state government should have taken some assurance on boundary dispute issue from Karnataka government before agreeing to give them water.
Nandgaonkar said his party chief Raj Thackeray had met BJP national president Nitin Gadkari to prevail upon the BJP government in Karnataka to respect the sentiments of the Marathi people and ensure that the rights of linguistic minorities were respected.
Bapat said even though Karnataka is currently ruled by the BJP, the party's unit in Maharashtra will steadfastly remain with Marathi people in Karnataka and "oppose the atrocities on them." Walse Patil said "this struggle will go down in the annals of history as the longest non-violent agitation."

"Even though Maharashtra is unitedly supporting the struggle, it has not achieved success. The rights of linguistic minorities is not being protected in Karnataka," he said.
In December last year, the Legislature passed a unanimous resolution, seeking President's rule in Belgaum and the other disputed areas till the Supreme Court settles the matter.

The resolution also urged the Centre to reinstate the dissolved Belgaum Municipal Corporation.

"Nothing has happened on that front," he added.

He said he was adjourning the House for one-and-half hours so that all legislators could visit the dharna at Azad maidan.

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