Why Are Karnataka and Maharashtra Still Fighting Over Belgaum?

The dispute between the two states over the district of Belgaum is not new and it keeps reappearing every few years.

1 min read

A decades-old border dispute between Maharashtra and Karnataka has caught fire again, with Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray staking claims to some long-disputed territories between the states.

Maharashtra, for the last 60 years or so, has been laying its claim on areas such as Belagavi, Karwar, Nippani, Vijayapura, Dharwad and Uttara-Kannada – that are currently a part of Karnataka, arguing that Marathi-speaking regions should come under Maharashtra.

And recently, in a public book launch event on 27 January, as CM Thackeray revived the state governments agenda asking for the disputed areas to be made into a union territory until the problems are resolved, Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister Lakshman Savadi spat back at him saying that Mumbai should be made into a Union Territory.


While Thackeray accused the Karnataka government of deliberately changing Belgaum's name to Belagavi... even threatening to take the matter to court, Savadi condemned the statements made by Shiv Sena top brass and said that Marathi people in Belgaum are like all Kannadigas in the state.

So, what is the Belgaum land dispute all about and what is fuelling it all these decades?

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