Mumbai: A day after Shiv Sena executive minister president Uddhav Thackeray appealed to President Pranab Mukherjee not to attend the inauguration of the Vidhan Bhavan building in Belgaum on October 11, Maharashtra minister Chhagan Bhujbal on Monday made a similar request to Mukherjee.
"The (Belgaum) border issue between Maharashtra and Karnataka is a very sensitive matter. Therefore, you should not attend the Vidhan Bhawan function," Bhujbal said in a letter to Mukherjee.
"If the President accepts the invitation to inaugurate the Vidhan Bhawan, it will boost the theory that the Centre is sidelining the right of Maharashtra," Bhujbal said in the letter.
Uddhav has written to Maharashtra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan, saying "the state government should appeal to the President not to attend the inaugural function."
Uddhav said Chavan should meet Mukherjee to convey the sentiments of the state government on the issue.
The Sena leader said the President should respect the sentiments of Marathi-speaking people in "Karnataka-occupied Maharashtra" of Belgaum, Karwar and other Marathi-dominated areas.
"This is a disputed area and the matter is sub judice. Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan should check if inauguration of the building amounts to contempt of court.
We reiterate our demand that the disputed areas be declared a union territory till the dispute is settled by the Supreme Court," he said.