Maratha quota: Team visits Hyderabad to study Nizam-era documents

Aurangabad: A team of current and retired officials of the Maharashtra government and language experts is visiting Hyderabad to look for Nizam-era documents related to the Kunbi community living in the Marathwada region, an official said on Thursday.

Faced with renewed demand for a quota for the Maratha community, the Maharashtra government has decided to give Kunbi caste certificates to the Marathas whose ancestors were described as Kunbi in Nizam-era documents. It will allow the Marathas from the Marathwada region to avail of quota benefits as the Kunbis fall in the Other Backward Classes (OBC) group.

The Marathwada region of Maharashtra, comprising eight districts, was part of the Nizam-ruled Hyderabad state until 1948.

The government team, which left on Wednesday, is expected to submit a report before a cabinet meeting scheduled here for September 16 but can extend the stay in Hyderabad if necessary, an official from the Aurangabad divisional commissioner’s office told PTI.

Maratha quota activist Manoj Jarange ended his hunger strike on the seventeenth day on Thursday in the presence of Chief Minister Eknath Shinde.

Jarange had demanded that the members of the Maratha community be given the Kunbi caste certificate without having to produce any documentary evidence.

“The team will check Nizam-era records, find out the exact population of Kunbis in the Nizam state and also look for house-wise lists and census data,” the official said.