The Center on Tuesday informed Lok Sabha that there is no proposal under consideration before the government to declare the areas dominated by ‘Marathi-speaking people’ in Karnataka bordering Maharashtra as a Union Territory.
Union Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai said demands andtions have been received from time representations to time from various individuals and organisations to declare these border areas as a Union Territory.
“However, no such proposal is under consideration,” he said in a written reply.
As per Census 2011, the Marathi-speaking population in border sub-districts of Maharashtra-Karnataka stands at 55,98,325. The Census 2011 showed the presence of Marathi-speaking people in Dudhani, Ichalkaranji, Kagal, Kamalnagar, Maindargi, Nipani, Sadalgi and Sankeshwar, the minister said.
Separately, the Shiv Sena on Tuesday in an editorial its mouthpiece ‘Saamana’ said that Belagavi should be declared as a Union Territory, alleging that atrocities on Marathi-speaking people by pro-Kannada outfits were continuing there.
On Monday, Karnataka MPs in Lok Sabha strongly protested against Shiv Sena MP Arvind Sawant’s allegation during the Zero Hour that Marathi-speaking people in the Belagavi district are being harassed.
BJP MP from Karnataka, Shivakumar Udasi has said that Shiv Sena raked up the issues related to Marathi-speaking people in Belagavi just to cover up the Maharashtra government’s failure to maintain law and order in the state.