Published On: Wed, Aug 9th, 2017

Mammoth Maratha ‘mook morcha’ engulfs Mumbai

Mumbai: Mumbai was engulfed by a ‘Maratha storm’ as lakhs of the politically powerful community prepared for their first, biggest and final mammoth ‘mook morcha’ (silent procession) to demand reservations in jobs and education, here on Wednesday.

They have been reaching the state capital by trains, private vehicles, trucks, tempos and even two-wheelers

Started since August 9, 2016, with processions in 57 different cities, the Maratha Kranti Morcha made its maiden entry in the state capital and ended the year-long campaign through processions by submitting a memo to Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.

The state government, police, BMC and other agencies were fully geared since the past 24 hours as participants in the mega-morcha started trickling in from different parts of the state since Monday night.

While the authorities anticipate participation of between 500,000-800,000 Marathas from across the state, the organisers are optimistic it will be the jewel in the crown of all morchas so far with the figure crossing three million.

Wednesday’s procession has bagged the support of all the political parties with even the NDA constituents Shiv Sena and Republican Party of India(A) announcing their backing late on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, the Maratha brigade which trooped into Mumbai from the five entry points, besides the railways, resulted in huge traffic jams in Mumbai and adjacent districts of Thane, Raigad and Palghar.

They have been reaching the state capital by trains, private vehicles, trucks, tempos and even two-wheelers waving Maratha flags and sporting bright orange turbans, entering through railway stations and the entry points.

The Mumbai Police have geared up with over 7,000 personnel, including commandos, armed police, cops in plainclothes, assigned for providing security duties during the procession.

The police plan to make big use of the social media like Twitter, Facebook, WhatsApp, FM radios and other media to provide updates on traffic to the millions of office-goers in the morning and evening peak hours.

All schools and colleges in south Mumbai were ordered shut by Education Minister Vinod Tawde on the day to ensure students were not inconvenienced during the procession.

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