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Border Issue: Elements Stoking Unrest Identified, Warns Eknath Shinde, But Doesn’t Name

The Shinde-Fadnavis government in Maharashtra has issued a tacit warning to ‘some’ political parties that the forces creating unrest in the state’s border areas by instigating demands for merger with neighbouring states had been identified by the police. They will be uncovered in the due course, deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis had indicated on December 18. The Maharashtra-Karnataka border dispute has assumed a political hue even as an agitation was organised by the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) at the border with Karnataka on Monday (Dec 19) to press for the merger of Marathi-speaking areas with the state. On the opening day of the state legislature’s winter session, opposition leader Ajit Pawar tried to corner the government over the chronic feud. In his impassioned retort, chief minister Eknath Shinde warned that the elements inciting village panchayat resolutions to demand merger with the neighbouring state have been identified. He, however, did not specify any details but reiterated that a bogus twitter handle in the name of his counterpart Basavaraj Bommai was used for fuelling the agitation. But former chief minister Ashok Chavan pointed out that the handle had been verified by Twitter as genuine. Moreover, even today, official Karnataka government decisions were uploaded on the handle, active since January 2015. If it was bogus, why was it not deleted, demanded Chavan.