MUMBAI: Today, a bill has been passed by the Maharashtra assembly as per which Marathas will now get 16 per cent reservation in jobs and education in the state. The 16% reservation that will be provided to the Marathas is above the 50 per cent reservation allowed by the Supreme Court. As of now, the reserved seats in the state are 52% which after the Maratha quota will sum up to 68 per cent.

In Maharashtra, 30 per cent of the state’s population comprises of Marathas which in the earlier part of the year was declared as a backward community following their long-standing demand. The state government led by Devendra Fadnavis took action after protests by the community took a violent turn in July and August.

An increase in the strength of the community started last year and a large section of Maharashtra politicians belonged to Marathas. The members of the community were having complains that the politicians have done nothing for their community. The young brigade claimed because of quota and other benefits, even the Scheduled Castes and Tribes were better off.

The protests regarding the concern initiated as silent marches but these got violent after the death of 28-year-old man in July as he committed suicide. A second protester also made a suicide attempt.

Following the death of the protestor, the members of the community came on the roads and scheduled frequent bandhs and daylong protests that was accompanied by violence in various pockets.

Besides this, the protesters choked down the train lines and shops and vehicles were set on fire at the time of festivals. Even shutdown was called in Maharashtra which is the financial heart of the country, by the Maratha Kranti Morcha.

Later, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis promised that the government will look into the matter. “A law was made for reservation to the community, but that was stayed by Bombay High Court,” Mr Fadnavis said.