Want UT status for Karnataka border dispute areas: Maharashtra CM | Mumbai News – Times of India

MUMBAI: Chief minister Uddhav Thackeray said on Wednesday that the Maharashtra government will urge the Supreme Court to declare the “disputed areas” along the Maharashtra-Karnataka border as a Union Territory till the SC gives its final verdict in the ongoing border dispute case. The CM said that the issue can be resolved only during the tenure of the current Maha Vikas Aghadi government, or else it would never get resolved.
Thackeray appealed to politicians in Maharashtra to unite across party lines for the issue to be resolved. He was speaking at the release function of a book titled ‘Maharashtra-Karnataka Seemawad: Sangharsh ani Sankalp’ (Maharashtra-Karnataka border dispute: Struggle and Resolve’) held at the Sahyadri government guest house in the presence of NCP chief Sharad Pawar, deputy CM Ajit Pawar, revenue minister Balasaheb Thorat and opposition leader in the legislative council Pravin Darekar. The book has been edited by an officer on special duty (OSD), Dr Deepak Pawar.
The Sena pushed its Marathi manoos agenda, for which NCP extended support, while Congress preferred to remain mum. State Congress chief Thorat, who attended the event, did not speak on the issue. Sharad Pawar said, “The Maharashtra government should put its case in a strong manner before the SC as it is the last recourse to resolve the issue.”
Thackeray asserted that his government and all political parties are with the Marathi-speaking people living in the disputed areas such as Belgaum, Nipani and Karwar. He pointed out that the Karnataka government had renamed one of the disputed areas, Belgaum, declaring it as the second capital of Karnataka, and had also held a legislature session there despite the border case being sub-judice in the apex court. “Hence the Maharashtra government will plead to the SC to declare the disputed parts as a Union Territory so that the Karnataka government cannot take any decision related to these areas,” he said.
The CM, who also chaired a high-powered committee meeting on the issue after the function, said, “The Centre should play the impartial role of a guardian if two states have a dispute in the court.” He also said that all parties in the state should unite and put Maharashtra’s stand aggressively before the Centre.
The border issue has been pending in the SC since 2004. Maharashtra has demanded that Belgaum, Nipani and Karwar should be incorporated in the state as the Marathi-speaking population in these areas is in a majority.
In 1966, the Centre had formed the Mahajan Commission to study the issue. It was led by the former Chief Justice of Supreme Court, Meher Chand Mahajan.

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Sagar Biswas

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