Video Editor: Sandeep SumanVideo Producer: Shohini BoseA police constable was killed while a policeman was injured in stone-pelting that broke out on Tuesday, 24 July, during a statewide protest called by Maratha groups seeking reservation for the community, PTI reported.The Maratha Kranti Morcha (MKM), which is spearheading the agitation, has called for a Mumbai bandh on Wednesday, 25 July.We will observe a peaceful bandh in Thane, Navi Mumbai, Raigad to be bandh tomorrow (25 July). Schools and colleges will not be included in this bandh as we do not intend to trouble anyone.Maratha Kranti Samaj Spokesperson to ANIEarlier on 24 July, MKM workers set a van ablaze in Aurangabad’s Gangapur, as protests demanding reservation for the Maratha community in government jobs and education turned violent.Quotas for Marathas – a politically influential community that constitutes around 30 percent of Maharashtra's population – has stirred controversy for some time now. Last year, the Maratha Kranti Morcha organised a massive rally in Mumbai, hoping to air their demands.Protesters Want Kakasaheb Dattatraya Shinde to be Named MartyrThe agitation aggravated a day after a 28-year-old demonstrator took his life by jumping into the Godavari river in the temple town of Kaygaon in Aurangabad’s Gangapur taluka.Two more people – Jayant Sonavne and Jagannath Sonavne – attempted to kill themselves as part of the demonstrations. A handful of protestors resorted to shaving their heads in protest.The deceased protester, Kakasaheb Dattatraya Shinde, was a member of the Sakal Maratha Kranti Thok Morcha, and worked as a driver for a local Shiv Sena leader. Shinde reportedly jumped into the Godavari river in the midst of the jal samadhi agitation. The police confirmed that he died due to drowning.We demand that he be declared a martyr, his family be given a compensation of Rs 50 lakh, his brother be given a government job and action be taken against the local administration. We won’t collect his body or perform his last rites until and unless our demands are met.Maratha Kranti Morcha member to ANIFollowing the death, protesters called a bandh in the state on 24 July. They blocked the Mumbai-Pune highway, among other roads, demanded Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis’ resignation, and attacked Shiv Sena MP Chandrakant Khaire’s vehicle when he went to attend Shinde’s funeral on 23 July, ANI reported.CM Fadnavis Skips Annual Puja in Response to ProtestsIn light of the protests, CM Fadnavis skipped the annual puja at the Lord Vitthal Temple in Pandharpur town. Following the puja, which is traditionally conducted by the Chief Minister, the public is allowed into the temple and prayers continue for the next few months.Maratha Kranti Morcha: Fadnavis Responds to Reservation DemandsFadnavis told reporters that he skipped the event because he feared for the lives of nearly 10 lakh people, who are expected to be at the temple town in Solapur for the occasion of ‘Ashadhi Ekadashi’.“If throwing stones at me can help win reservation for the Maratha community, I am ready for it,” the CM told reporters, adding that only the court could take a decision on the issue of granting reservation to the community.Fadnavis’ decision to stay away from the puja came after a pro-quota leader of the community in Pandharpur announced that demonstrators would disrupt the puja if the CM attended it.Maratha Kranti Morcha Demands Fadnavis’ ApologyThe Maratha Kranti Morcha, however, on Monday, 23 July denied charges that protesters had threatened to spark violence at Pandharpur, and demanded an apology from the Chief Minister.All these allegations are baseless. Till date, the Maratha community has taken out 58 mookmorchas (silent marches) in the state, and all these morchas were peaceful in nature. Not a single case of violence was reported during these morchas.Coordinator Pravin Gaikwad to PTIMaharashtra Farmers’ March Sets the Bar Through Discipline, PeaceStating that warkaris (pilgrims who arrive on foot at Pandharpur during Ashadhi Ekadashi) were farmers, Gaikwad said it was the children of warkaris who were demanding reservations in jobs and education. Demanding an apology, Gaikwad dared Fadnavis to make public he intelligence report (regarding his statement that protests would erupt at the temple).(With inputs from PTI and The Indian Express)(This is a developing story) We'll get through this! Meanwhile, here's all you need to know about the Coronavirus outbreak to keep yourself safe, informed, and updated. The Quint is now available on Telegram & WhatsApp too, Click here to join.