Maharashtra Muslims demand job quota

Mumbai, May 27 (IANS) Over 10,000 Muslims from all over Maharashtra Monday vowed to continue their struggle for getting 20 percent job and academic reservations, at a gathering here.

Holding aloft the national Tricolour at Somaiya Ground in north Mumbai and Muslim Reservation Federation (MRF) flags, the gathering was the culmination of a 10-day-long 300-km march from Malegaon to Mumbai.

“This is the beginning of a long battle and we shall not rest till our demands are conceded by the government,” said MRF convenor Asif S. Rasheed, who led the march.

He said that this was the only solution for the empowerment of the minority community.

A delegation of the MRF would meet Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan and urged him to take a decision on the demands within a month, failing which a bigger agitation would be launched, Rasheed said.

He said if the Congress-led government in Andhra Pradesh could do it what was stopping Maharashtra from taking a similar decision.

Maharashtra Samajwadi Party President Abu Asim Azmi, who addressed the gathering, criticised the Muslim leaders from the Congress and Nationalist Congress Party for not supporting their community members.

“Reservations in jobs and education is the right of the ordinary Muslims and it must be granted without delay. There are already many committee reports and recommendations to this effect, now they must be implemented,” Azmi demanded.

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