Maratha Kranti Morcha in Mumbai: How 12K volunteers put the rally in motion
As many as two lakh people took to the streets, however, there were no untoward incidents at the march that took off from the Byculla Zoo and ended at the Azad Maidan — around 6kmmumbai Updated: Aug 10, 2017 09:39 IST
Besides a sea of saffron that swept the streets of South Mumbai, the one thing everyone noticed on Wednesday was the way the Marathi Kranti Morcha,organised to demand set quotas for Marathas in government jobs and colleges, was planned.
As many as two lakh people took to the streets, however, there were no untoward incidents at the march that took off from the Byculla Zoo and ended at the Azad Maidan — around 6km.
According to volunteers, it was the attention to minute details as well as the coordination among them over the past 10 days that ensured a smooth protest.
The Mumbai core committee comprised 40 volunteers who set up a control room that prepared a road map for the march.
When the preparation started with hardly 400 volunteers, it swelled to 12,000 by Tuesday.
“The control room was in charge of spreading the message through social media, coordinating with volunteers across the state and authorities as well as making preparations,” said Viren Pawar, volunteer.
Though the morcha was announced two months ago, there was confusion within the Maratha community. However, the Mumbai committee took over a fortnight ago and prepared a road map to make this a success.
In the initial few days, the control room was mostly manned by volunteers in the evenings, after their regular jobs, but from the last week, they started working through the day.
The Mumbai core committee then formed 15 sub committees, with each being assigned a specific duty.
“Each committee was given a charge like publicity, stage, printing, food and water, toilets and to procure permissions,” said Pawar. Even though people who came from outside Mumbai were supposed to make their own arrangements, all logistical help was rendered by volunteers. The Mumbai Port Trust also allowed vehicles to be parked on their land. In addition, the volunteers also hired mobile toilets from the BMC on rent.
With respect to the funding for brochures, flags, refreshments and permissions, a decision was taken not to accept any cash.
“We told our donors to contact our vendors and pay them directly. We wanted to adopt a fully transparent model,” said Pawar.