Heavy ruckus over Maratha reservation in Jalna, Maharashtra, 42 policemen injured, two buses set on fire

Maratha Reservation Movement: The Maratha quota agitation in Maharashtra’s Jalna district turned violent on Friday, leaving several people, including at least 42 policemen, injured. There has been no report of injuries to common citizens.

Officials said that police lathi-charged and fired tear gas shells to disperse the violent mob at Antarwali Sarathi village on Dhule-Solapur road in Ambad tehsil.

After the police action, the protesters vandalized more than 20 vehicles. Two vehicles were also set on fire. In view of the tension, a large number of police forces were deployed.

Villagers claimed that the police fired in the air, but officials did not confirm this. The protesters, led by Manoj Jarange, were on a hunger strike in the village since Tuesday demanding reservation for the Maratha community.

The reservation given by the state government for the politically influential Maratha community was canceled by the Supreme Court.

CM appeals for calm

Chief Minister Eknath Shinde appealed for calm and announced that a committee would be set up to probe the violence at a high level. At the same time, Deputy Chief Minister and Home Minister Devendra Fadnavis claimed that the police were forced to lathicharge due to stone pelting.

Police said the agitation turned violent on Friday and some people targeted state transport buses and private vehicles.

Officials said that Chief Minister Eknath Shinde had spoken to the protesters on Wednesday and urged them to end the hunger strike but they refused to back down. He told that additional police force has been sent to Jalna.

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