Congress pitch for Muslim quota could hurt Shiv Sena

Express News Service
MUMBAI: The Maharashtra Congress resolution on Tuesday demanding reservations for the Muslims in education and government jobs is likely to put its ruling ally, the Shiv Sena, in a spot of bother.

Sources in the Shiv Sena asserted that being a staunch Hindutva party, any capitulation to the Congress demand could hurt its electoral prospect in the future.

“Muslim reservations can turn into a bone of contention for the Maha Vikas Aghadi partners. However, we are confident that Uddhav Thackeray will handle the situations skillfully as he is doing in other cases,” a Sena insider said.

On his part, Maharashtra Congress president Nana Patole maintained that the party is committed to development and welfare of all communities.  

“During the Congress rule, we gave Maratha and Muslim quota, but later Devendra Fadnavis cancelled the Muslim reservation. Since Congress is the partner in Maha Vikas Aghadi, we want to fulfil our promise to the community,” said Patole.

What could make the situation delicate for Uddhav is that the NCP — the third ally in the ruling MVA alliance — is also not openly against the Muslim quota. Earlier, NCP minister Nawab Malik had also sought quota under the common minimum agenda.

“While preparing the agenda, we had discussed the Muslim reservations where no MVA party had raised objections,” he had said.