Latur, Oct 28 (PTI) Amid a hunger strike by activist Manoj Jarange over the Maratha quota in Maharashtra, members of the community on Saturday blocked a road in Latur district, holding up traffic for nearly two hours, officials said.
A large number of people from the Maratha community gathered at Borgaon Kale village on the Murud-Latur road in solidarity with Jarange. The protesters blocked the movement of vehicles on the road.
The protesters said local Maratha MLAs do not speak a single word about the community’s demand for reservation in government jobs and education. A local activist, Umesh Deshmukh, also sat on a fast at the spot, while many launched a relay hunger strike with him.
Vehicular movement resumed after nearly two hours, said an official, adding that several policemen were deployed at the spot to maintain law and order.
Meanwhile, many community members, including women, from ten villages entered the Majara river at Nagzari village in the district as part of their protest. They also demanded a caste census in the state.
In Katgaon village, protesters burnt a few banners of Congress MLA Dheeraj Deshmukh, who represents the Latur rural constituency.
Jarange, who is on a fast at Antarwali Sarati village in Jalna district, said on Saturday that a series of hunger strikes would begin in every village in Maharashtra from October 29 if the government fails to grant the reservation immediately.
He announced that the second phase of the reservation movement had begun and the third phase would start on October 31. The 40-year-old, whose fast entered the fourth day on Saturday, refused to be examined by doctors. PTI COR NR