THE FORMER convener of Maratha Kranti Morcha, Suresh Patil, has launched a new political party, Maharashtra Kranti Sena, to push for Maratha reservation ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
Patil, while formally announcing the decision at Raireshwar Temple in Bhor taluk, 85 km from Pune, on Thursday, will contest the elections next year. NCP MP Udayanraje Bhosale has extended his support to the new party, Patil said.
Speaking to PTI from Satara in western Maharashtra, Patil said Maratha organisations like Sakal Maratha Samaj (SMS) and Maratha Kranti Morcha (MKM) that have been spearheading the agitation for quota in jobs and education, have opposed the new outfit. “But we are not using the word ‘Maratha’ in the name of our party. We hope they (SMS and MKM) drop their misgivings about us and join the party,” Patil added.
Patil’s decision has invited criticism from leaders of the MKM, which was set up two years ago to take forward the Maratha reservation agenda. Leaders from MKM’s Mumbai, Nashik, Pune and Aurangabad units claimed that creating a new political outfit would hurt their cause and create a wedge. “It would also help the mainstream parties,” said a senior leader.
He added: “The decision to bring Marathas together was to ensure they get reservation in jobs and education. However, Suresh Patil’s decision could split the organisation, as sections of youths, ambitious to contest elections, will joint the new outfit.”
When contacted, Maratha Kranti Thok Morcha convener Sanjay Sawant accused Patil of forming the party to further his own political motives. “Patil should not take the Maratha community for granted. Our organisation confronted him in Satara today and he decided to change the party’s name from ‘Maratha Kranti Sena’ to ‘Maharashtra Kranti Sena’, saying his objective is to work for all sections of the society,” Sawant said.
He blamed the state for various divisions in the Morcha. “Patil wanted to capitalise on the issue as the November 15 deadline given by the state government for taking a decision on the issue of Maratha reservation is nearing,” Sawant alleged.
With PTI inputs