The border dispute on Belagavi between Maharashtra and Karnataka has been raked up once again, this time by a Maharashtra minister. 

Maharashtra minister Chandrakant Bacchu Patil has cautioned Karnataka of legal action if the state introduces an enactment prohibiting elected representatives of local bodies and legislators from pronouncing 'Jai Maharashtra' in their respective assemblies or in public functions.


Chandrakant Bacchu Patil, Nodal Minister, Maharashtra-Karnataka Border Dispute, wrote a letter to this effect to Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Tuesday, terming the proposed enactment as "unlawful".


Citing that Urban Development Minister Roshan Baig had made an announcement to this effect in Belagavi recently, Patil has said that the statement has "shocked" his government. 
Not only has he termed Baig's act as "unconstitutional" - threatening freedom of speech, he has also called the Minister an "ultra virus".


"Such statements would provoke people, disrupting peace and harmony. As per Article 19 (C) of the Constitution, every citizen was free to express his opinions and feelings. Karnataka should ensure that it does not go ahead with its proposal, else, Maharashtra will be forced to initiate legal action against it," states Patil's letter.


The Maharashtra minister has also highlighted that the border issue of both states was still pending before the High Court and the Supreme Court, and has said that it was improper of the government to be making public statements of this nature. 


"The Maharashtra government was co-operating with Karnataka in the fields of water and energy, ensuring economic upliftment of people of both states. I feel that the above-referred statement must be a personal opinion of Baig, and the Karnataka government will condemn it," he added.


Former Belagavi mayor Saritha and Zilla Panchayat member Saraswathi (members of Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti) have been accused of raising 'Jai Maharashtra' slogans. 

Taking objection to their behaviour, Minister Roshan Baig had stated that such members would be disqualified if they don't mend their ways.
 
But the members have stated that they would not care for such "threats". "We don't mind if you disqualify us. We would still say Jai Maharashtra," said Belagavi former mayor Saritha.