Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah today chaired a meeting of experts to discuss the arguments to be placed before the Supreme Court appointed Justice Manohar Sareen Commission on a petition filed by Maharashtra for inclusion of 814 villages of some districts from Karnataka into Maharashtra.
"We had a meeting on the border issue. The case is coming up. We have told lawyers about our stand, they will discuss with Nariman (state's counsel) and proceed on it in the court," Siddaramaiah told reporters here.
Taking steps to protect the interests of the state, the government has all records to show that Belagavi is an integral part of Karnataka, Siddaramaiah said.
The meeting was attended by Ministers H K Patil, Satish Jarkiholi, T B Jayachandra and MLC V S Ugrappa, besides retired judges V S Malimath, Rama Jois, S R Nayak and Ramakrishna.
The meeting was also attended by state Advocate General Ravi Varma Kumar and former Advocate General Uday Holla and other legal luminaries.
Countering Maharashtra's plea, Karnataka government maintained its stand that the villages demanded by the neighbouring state already existed within the state as per the recommendations of the Mahajan Commission, which should be considered as the final report.
Apart from the contention of inclusion of 814 villages, which fall in Belgaum, Gulbarga, Bidar and Karwar districts, Karnataka has opposed setting up of 44 Marathi schools in Jat taluk of Sangli district in Maharashtra, where a majority of Kannada-speaking people reside.