Mumbai, Feb 19: Spurred by the passing of the bill to create a separate Telangana state out of Andhra Pradesh, political parties in Maharashtra, barring Shiv Sena, again raised the demand for a separate Vidarbha here Wednesday.
Republican Party of India-A chief Ramdas Athawale announced an agitation to support the cause of a separate Vidarbha from Feb 24 in the state’s eastern region.
“The central government should have conceded the demand for a separate Vidarbha and created it along with Telangana,” Athawale demanded, adding that his party would meet Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde on the issue.
He added that the region is lagging behind in terms of development, is plagued by farmers’ suicides and faces huge power cuts daily.
“If it is carved as a separate state, it will give a fillip to the development of the region which has been neglected for long and provide relief to the people there,” Athawale pointed out to media persons here.
Bharatiya Janata Party state president Devendra Fadnavis said that the party has already passed a resolution and is committed towards smaller states, including Vidarbha.
Similarly, Congress state president Manikrao Thakre declared that the party would support a separate Vidarbha.
However, the Shiv Sena – an ally of the BJP and RPI-A – is strongly opposed to creating Vidarbha.
While the late Shiv Sena patriarch Bal Thackeray had strongly opposed creating a Vidarbha, his son and present party chief Uddhav Thackeray has also expressed his opposition several times.