1 Nov :Under pressure from Maratha leaders to provide reservation to the dominant community in the state, Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh said that Justice Bapat Commission looking into the matter will decide on the merits of the demand.
"The Government has no role. It is up to the Commission to recommend it. It is the Commission which will identify if reservation should be given to Marathas," Deshmukh said on Friday.
The Commission was set up in 2004 following demands from a section of the predominant Maratha community for reservations.Prominent state leaders, including Deshmukh and NCP chief Sharad Pawar belong to the Maratha community.
To a question whether he being a Maratha supported the demand, Deshmukh said, "there is no question of my views on the issue. We are waiting to see what the panel recommends. It is for the panel to go into the merits or demerits of the demand and take a decision."
Describing the procedure followed by the Commission, the Chief Minister said, "the recommendation depends upon parameters for getting reservations. These include lifestyle, language, marriage system and many other minor details about the community and only an expert can take a decision on it."
A delegation led by former MLC Vinayak Mete of NCP met Deshmukh last month, demanding reservation for Maratha community.Deshmukh had told the delegation that he would look into the matter sympathetically.
"We expect Bapat Commission to give justice to Maratha community which has been lagging behind others on the socio-economic front," Mete had said.