MUMBAI: RSS ideologue MG Vaidya triggered a controversy with his demand of dividing Maharashtra into four parts, prompting the government to outrightly reject his idea.
In Nagpur, Vaidya said the population of Maharashtra is around 11-12 crore.
“It is very difficult for the administration. If it is divided into four parts, things will much smoother for the functioning of these regions. Each state will have around four crore population,” he said.
Mumbai along with Konkan should be one state, Vaidya said.
“The second state can be western Maharashtra, third Vidarbha while the fourth can be Marathwada that will include North Maharashtra.”
Currently, Maharashtra is divided into six regions — Desh (Pune division), Marathwada (Aurangabad division), Vidarbha (Amravati division), Konkan (Konkan division) Vidarbha (Nagpur division) and Khandesh (Nashik division) — for administrative purpose.
This is not the first time that Vaidya has spoken about division of Maharashtra. In 2016, he supported former Advocate General Shrihari Aney who had spoken for a separate Marathwada. In April last year, Aney attacked both Congress and BJP for ignoring the statehood demand of Vidarbha.
Vaidya’s statement was opposed by the MVA government which asserted that Maharashtra would remain united.
Housing minister Jitendra Awhad said the government will never allow division of Maharashtra.
“RSS is talking the language of dividing Maharashtra. RSS has damaged the social fabric of the state, now it should not divide the state on a geographical basis. The people of Maharashtra will not pardon you. Maharashtra was one and it will remain united,” said Awhad.
In 2014, the BJP came in power on the plank of separate statehood for Vidarbha. Of the total 62 seats in Vidarbha, BJP had won 44. Later, its decision to sideline Vidarbha reflected badly as it won only 29 seats in 2019.