Nagpur: With the UPA government likely to concede the demand for creation of Telangana state, the call for carving out a separate Vidarbha state out of Maharashtra has started gaining heat.
Staunch protagonist of Vidarbha state, former BJP MP Banwarilal Purohit, who formed a political outfit for fighting for the cause, told PTI that his party had passed a resolution in its Bhubneshwar executive committee in 1992 supporting separate Vidarbha.
Now, the BJP should convince its alliance partner Shiv Sena to concede the demand, he said.
The issue (of creating separate Vidarbha) has been raised at appropriate forum many times in the past, Congress MP from Nagpur Vilas Muttemwar said.
A group of pro-Vidarbha leaders, including former director general of police Prabir Chakraborty, former MLA Wamanrao Chatap along with Deepak Nilawar, Ahmed Kadar (of pro-Vidarbha group) and Ram Newle from Shetkari Sanghatana, will hold a sit-in agitation at Jantar Mantar in Delhi on August 5 to press for the demand, Chakraborty said.
Two Congress stalwarts and former Union ministers N K P Salve and Vasant Sathe (both hailing from Vidarbha) had raised the issue some years back and also sat on an indefinite strike in city.
Also, the then Union Labour Minister P A Sangma, who was sent on a mission by Rajiv Gandhi to study the prospect of creating Vidarbha, had indicated positively, but some how it could not be done, a senior leader said on condition of anonymity.
An all-party bandh demanding separate Vidarbha had also been organised in the region about two years back, sources said.
A prominent city-based NGO, Vidarbha Economic development Council (VED), has also strongly demanded carving out Vidarbha from Maharashtra.