Former K’taka CM Kumaraswamy Slams Ajit Pawar’s ‘Immature’ Statements on Merging Border Areas with Maharashtra

Former chief minister of Karnataka H D Kumaraswamy on Sunday reprimanded Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar for making an “immature” statement about Maharashtra government is in favour of getting Marathi-speaking areas of Karnataka merged into Pawar’s state. In a series of tweets, Kumaraswamy said Pawar “once again displayed arrogance” and called his statements “reprehensible”.

Pawar on Sunday said they would continue to support the fight of Marathi-speaking people residing in border areas of neighbouring Karnataka to include those places in Maharashtra. He was addressing a gathering in Pune city on the occasion of Maharashtra’s foundation day. The western state was formed on May 1 day in 1960.

“While we are celebrating 62 years of formation of Maharashtra, we regret that the Marathi-speaking villages in Bidar, Bhalki, Belgaum, Karwar, Nippani and other places in Karnataka could not be merged with Maharashtra. The citizens of Maharashtra and its government are with their fight to be part of Maharashtra. I assure that we would keep supporting their fight till these villages become part of Maharashtra,” Pawar had said.

Kumaraswamy said in a tweet that by raking up the border dispute issue, Pawar was not only misguiding people who speak the two languages but also using it as a “political ploy to keep border areas under-developed.”

Further, the former Karnataka CM recalled the time in 2006 when “Ajit Pawar attempted to arm twist the State by using the then Union Home Minister in UPA government” and he in turn decided to build the Suvarna Vidhana Soudha in Belagavi.

“Marathi leaders must stop using Belagavi for creating divisions. Otherwise, similar sensitive issues across the national will come to the forefront threatening division of the country,” Kumaraswamy said in one of the tweets.

“In every State, there are people who speak every language.There are Marathi speaking people in Karnataka. Let Ajit Pawar talk about their good. Let him talk with our State government. We believe that all those who live in Karnataka are Kannadigas. Pawar should understand this,” he said.

Indrajit Lankesh, writer and film director, also called Pawar’s statements “immature” and said Maharashtra should first look into its fight with Hindi. “The majority of people spoke kannada there . Its a very immature statement .They should look first to their state, they are fighting with Hindi,” Lankesh said.

Maharashtra claims certain areas, including Belgaum, Karwar nd Nippani which are part of Karnataka, contending that majority population in these areas is Marathi-speaking. The case of Maharashtra-Karnataka bounding dispute is pending before the Supreme Court.

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