Mumbai: Pro-Maratha reservation activist Manoj Jarange-Patil accused the Congress party on Monday of betraying the Maratha community’s interests and warned them of repercussions in the upcoming Maharashtra assembly elections.

Jarange-Patil warns Cong of electoral backlash in assembly polls over Maratha quota issue

Jarange-Patil’s reaction came after Leader of Opposition and prominent OBC leader Vijay Wadettiwar had opposed reserving a portion of the OBC quota for the Maratha community.

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Reacting to the Congress leader’s stance, the activist on the third day of his indefinite fast at Antarwali Sarathi village in Jalna, said, “The Congress sought votes from the Maratha community in the recent Lok Sabha elections, and now they are acting against our interests. They will face the consequences in the Vidhan Sabha elections.”

Wadettiwar while speaking to the media in Delhi about the hunger strike of Jarange-Patil said that OBC reservations should not be affected while giving reservations to the Maratha community. “The state government will take a call on the demands of Jarange-Patil on the Maratha reservation. We support reservations for poor people from the Maratha community. We only expect that the government should not touch OBC reservation while giving Maratha reservation,” said Wadettiwar.

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Kalyan Kale, the newly elected Congress MP of Jalna, who went to meet Jarange-Patil during the hunger strike called Wadettiwar and told him that the activist is angry over his remarks. As their telephonic conversation was on, Jarange-Patil warned Wadettiwar of the consequences. “Congress people won the Lok Sabha elections with the help of votes from the Maratha community. Now Congress leaders are making statements against Maratha reservations. If this continues, I along with the Maratha community will ensure the defeat of Wadettiwar and Congress in the assembly elections.” he said.

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The quota activist also told the media that he is a proud Hindu and Maratha and is working for a change of power. “In Lok Sabha elections, Mahayuti got a setback. If the state government ignores Maratha reservation, then it will pay the price in the assembly elections too,” said Jarange.

Kale, however, said there was some misunderstanding between Jarange and Wadettiwar. “I met Jarange Patil and thanked him as Maratha community voters played an important role in my victory. I spoke to Wadettiwar about how Jarange-Patil felt but Wadettiwar said he did not make any statement against the activist. It seems there is some misunderstanding.” said Kale.