LokSabha 2019: Pro-Maratha outfit joins BJP-Sena alliance in Maharashtra

PTI
Sunday, 7 April 2019

"The welfare and development of the Maratha community is my priority. The Congress and NCP betrayed the Marathas. The current state government led by Devendra Fadnavis worked hard for the welfare of the community," he said. 

Mumbai: The Maharashtra Kranti Sena (MKS), a recently formed pro-Maratha political outfit, on Sunday joined the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance in the state ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.
 
MKS founder president Suresh Patil was one of the leaders who earlier spearheaded the agitation to seek reservation for the Maratha community in government jobs and education. 

The party, which recently named 15 candidates for the Lok Sabha elections, will now withdraw its nominees in support of the saffron alliance, Patil told reporters here. 

Nine candidates who earlier filed their nominations on MKS ticket will withdraw from the race, while the remaining will not file their papers, he said. 

Patil, who had also filed his nomination from Hathkanangale seat, said he was joining the BJP-Sena alliance as a partner and that his support was "unconditional".
 
"The welfare and development of the Maratha community is my priority. The Congress and NCP betrayed the Marathas. The current state government led by Devendra Fadnavis worked hard for the welfare of the community," he said. 

State education minister Vinod Tawde, who was also present at the press conference, said the government granted 16 per cent reservation to Marathas last year not for votes but for the community's betterment.
 
"If we want only votes then the reservation wouldn't stand legal scrutiny. Till now, the Bombay High Court has not stayed the reservation," he said.
 
Transport ministerDiwakar Raote said Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray was committed to the welfare of Marathas. 

Raote and Tawde gave letters of assurance to Patil on behalf of Thackeray and Fadnavis, respectively, about their commitment towards welfare of the Maratha community. 

On November 29 last year, the Maharashtra legislature passed a bill granting 16 per cent reservation in education and government jobs for the Maratha community under the socially and educationally backward category (SEBC).
 
This 16 per cent quota will be in addition to the existing 52 per cent reservation for other groups, taking the total percentage in the state to 68 per cent.
 
Lok Sabha elections to 48 seats in the state will be held in four phases on April 11, 18, 23 and 29, and the results will be declared on May 23.  

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