States boundary row: Maha to form ministerial panel soon, says CM

As directed by Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Maharashtra will soon set up a committee of ministers to study and take measures to resolve the long-pending boundary row with Karnataka, Chief Minister Eknath Shinde said here on Thursday.

Assuring that the state government is standing behind the Marathi people in the disputed border areas, he assured that steps will be taken to solve their grievances and problems.

Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said that till the border issue is pending in the Supreme Court, the government will adhere to the instructions of Shah and make all efforts to ensure that peace is maintained in the region.

The duo’s comments came after their meeting with Shah, Karnataka CM Basavraj Bommai and home minister Araga Gyanendra in New Delhi late on Wednesday.

At the meeting, Shah said he has advised both the states to maintain a status quo till the outcome of the case in the apex court.

He also directed both states to form a committee of three ministers from each side to coordinate, visit the disputed areas, study and resolve problems of the people there.

Shah also advised the two states that till the SC verdict, no state will make allegations or counter-allegations against each other, neither state will make claims/demands on each other and ensure that the situation doesn’t deteriorate.

Welcoming Shah’s initiative, Nationalist Congress Party National Spokesperson Clyde Crasto said it remains to be seen whether the Karnataka CM will abide by the instructions or not.

“Will CM Bommai follow the instructions of Shah or will he challenge it by continuing to make unwarranted statements as in the past. As far as Maharashtra CM is concerned, he is anyway silent on the border issue which is very important to the people of this state,” Crasto said.

On his part, Fadnavis claimed that a few organisations were trying to create disturbances and said the Centre has warned of stringent action against them.

He declared that Maharashtra has not violated any laws in the border regions though there are occasional flare-ups when the Marathi language issue comes to the fore or when attempts are made to shut down Marathi schools there.

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