Opposition, Sena corner govt over separate Vidarbha issue

Mumbai, Jul 29: Opposition along with Shiv Sena today demanded a clarification from the Maharashtra government over a bill moved by BJP MP Nana Patole in Lok Sabha seeking separate statehood for Vidarbha and created ruckus that led the House being adjourned for the day.

Leader of Opposition Dhananjay Munde, while raising the issue through the point of propriety, said Patole, an MP from Bhandara-Gondia, today moved a non-government Bill in Lok Sabha and demanded a separate statehood for Vidarbha.

Vidarbha issue: Oppn, Sena corner govt

"105 martyrs laid their lives for a united Maharashtra. In the last few months, there are people like Shrihari Aney (former Attorney General), who are demanding not only a separate Vidarbha but a separate Marathwada as well. This is a very serious issue.

The government needs to clarify if it supports its party MP's stand," he said. Sena MLC Neelam Gorhe then said that people of the state expect at least a few words from the government backing a united Maharashtra and that the House should pass a proposal for the same.

"Dilly dallying over the issue is not good for a united Maharashtra. We cannot forget the martyrdom of those who wanted Maharashtra to remain one," she said.

Senior Congress leader Narayan Rane said had it been an Independent MP's bill, one could have understood, but a BJP MP could not have brought such a bill without seeking an opinion from party's national and state leaders.

"The CM should clarify if he endorses this MP's demand, because this is a question of your self respect. We will not compromise over this issue," he said.

Parliamentary Affairs minister Girish Bapat then opined that discussions over the issue have been going on from a long time and that group leaders should sit together and decide a time when the issue can be discussed.

In the ensuing ruckus, the House was adjourned for 10 minutes. On re-assembling, Council Chairman Ramraje Nimbalkar said that the issue is important and the government should respond, but, at the same time, the House proceedings should also not be disrupted.

NCP member Sunil Tatkare then said the Opposition would be satisfied if the government gave a statement contending that it does not endorse Patole's demand. Commotion over the issue, however, continued, following which Nimbalkar adjourned the House for the day.


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