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Border Dispute: Bommai Refuses To Relent, Warns Of Consequences

Although two Maharashtra ministers have ‘postponed’ their Belagavi visit on Tuesday following Karnataka chief minister S R Bommai’s public statements, his fresh reiteration that the dispute was no longer alive for his state has generated anger in the state. Moreover, Bommai’s warning that consequences would have to be faced if any attempt is made to enter Belagavi in connection with the dispute has incited opposition parties in Maharashtra again. Expressing his displeasure at Bommai’s outburst, Maharashtra deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis has chided him by saying that as the matter is before the Supreme Court, neither Maharashtra nor Karnataka can do anything in this regard. Ministers Chandrakant Patil and Shambhuraje Desai were scheduled to visit Belagavi on 6 December but have dropped it. Despite this, Bommai has continued his combative stand. He has once again said that the request of Jath villagers from Sangli district of Maharashtra for inclusion in Karnataka would remain under his consideration. In a bid to blunt Karnataka’s initiatives, Maharashtra industry minister Uday Samant visited Jath area to reassure villagers that no effort would be spared to end their grievances. Samant said an industrial estate would be developed at Jath so that employment opportunities are generated there. A decision in this regard would be announced in a week, he promised the angry residents.