Maha Alliance is Maharashtra’s biggest traitor
It has been two years since the Maha Alliance government came to power in the state. But not a single leader has spoken so far about the progress of the state or the development works to be undertaken in the state. Simply criticizing the government at the Center has become their one-point program.
Maharashtra over the last couple of years i.e. since the government came to power has witnessed lawlessness – increase in cases of corruption, government authorities implicated to demand ransom, works delayed in the subway, former minister under arrest, atrocities against women and the highest number of deaths from Covid-19. And therefore, it would not be inappropriate to declare that the Tripartite Alliance government is the biggest traitor in Maharashtra.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s speech in parliament drew strong reactions from the leaders of Maha Vikas Aghadi’s government. These leaders began to defame the Bharatiya Janata Party by calling it “anti-Maharashtra”. But the fact is that it is the Maha Vikas Aghadi government that has betrayed Maharashtra many times in the last 26 months since coming to power. And to make people forget their betrayal, the leaders of this MVA government hasten to criticize the Prime Minister.
The intention of this article is therefore to expose the misdeeds of this alliance government after it came to power in November 2019.
In a recent incident, the Supreme Court criticized the Maha Vikas Aghadi government for suspending 12 MPs from the Bharatiya Janata party for one year. The Supreme Court, calling it “unconstitutional,” said suspending MPs for a few weeks can stand, but suspending MPs for a year is tantamount to punishing the voters who elect those MPs. This amounts to betraying the electorate who voted their representative for a five-year term, the court had said. The suspension of these 12 deputies amounted to depriving the voters of these 12 constituencies for a year.
On several occasions, the government failed to provide relief to farmers in the state. After the alliance government came to power, farmers were badly affected by natural calamities such as heavy rains, cyclones and heavy rains. Instead of reaching out to them with relief programs, the government failed to provide even the basic minimum compensation provided.
It can be recalled that before coming to power, Uddhav Thackeray and Ajit Pawar were of the opinion that farmers should receive aid of Rs 50,000 per hectare, but after assuming their respective functions as Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister, both did not even provide 10,000 rupees per hectare to these calamity affected farmers. ‘Mr Sanjay Raut, who will you blame for this betrayal?’ Raut, known for writing his thoughts on various topics in his ‘Rokthok’ column, must clarify whether the government can now be called the ‘biggest traitor’.
In another instance, the state government had collected millions of rupees from the people on behalf of the Corona Relief Fund. However, recently the government admitted that only 25% 100 of it had been spent. As people continue to suffer due to the still looming economic crisis, the balance of Rs 600 crore sits idle in the coffers. The Thackeray government, which is watching the PM Care Fund closely and asking for help, has withheld this money that the Lokayukta must step in and investigate the reasons behind the withholding of the money.
Also during the pandemic period, Maharashtra was the only state to record maximum cases, highest number of deaths, highest number of infections and thousands of lives lost, thanks to corrupt government practices. The government in power made the most of this opportune moment.
The Thackeray government, which tried to cover up each of its failures by pointing fingers at the central government, did not extend aid received for the poor, leaving the needy to starve. The chief minister who preferred to stay indoors even during the crucial time of the pandemic did not even go to Mantralaya and put the responsibility of dealing with the crisis on the citizens, leaving them to suffer. How best to describe this treatment towards the people of Maharashtra?
Moreover, the aid announced by the Thackeray government did not reach the beneficiaries. The question then arises: who pocketed this money? The government also failed to provide the aid received from the Center and as a result many families had to starve. What measures has the government initiated from the Rs 2,000 crore provided by the Center under the Disaster Relief Fund?
The Thackeray government has failed miserably in tackling corruption even during the pandemic period when the people of Maharashtra were reeling from a severe economic crisis. Corruption was rampant during this period – corruption in the availability of plastic bags needed to cover bodies, corruption in PPE kits, black marketing of ventilators and drugs like Remdisivir, lack of oxygen, inequitable distribution of vaccines and its stacking of stocks, lack of quality health facilities and corruption in setting up Covid centers had all reached their peak. At such a crucial moment, the Chief Minister had locked himself inside and kept repeating his slogan “My family, my responsibility”.
The Center government had provided food grains worth Rs 4,592 crore to Maharashtra, which included wheat worth Rs 1,750 crore, rice worth Rs 2,620 crore, dal worth Rs 100 crore and another Rs 122 crore for migrant workers. A plan has been drawn up to provide free food grains to the poor and another Rs 3,800 crore has been deposited in the bank accounts of 86,000 beneficiaries including farmers, widows, disabled and elderly people in Maharashtra.
The central government has also reduced fuel tax. But the alliance government ignored the request to reduce VAT on fuel. While 25 states have reduced VAT, Maharashtra has yet to reduce VAT citing reasons of poor economic situation in the state. While the alliance government refused to cut VAT on petrol and diesel, it was willing to cut excise duty on imported Scotch whiskey by 150%. Isn’t the alliance government concerned about its coffers now?
The Chief Minister also waived the fine imposed on MP Pratap Sarnaik’s building but failed to appear to resolve complaints from employees of the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC).
Nearly 50 MSRTC employees committed suicide. Instead of seeking an amicable solution to their strike problems, the government resorted to arbitrariness.
The Tripartite Alliance government’s anti-education policy has jeopardized the careers of thousands of budding students. Thousands of students aspiring to a career in the health sector were left in anguish when the government handed the responsibility of conducting the exams to a fraud agency, as a result, there have been major blunders in these exams. Instances of paper leakage and corruption during MHADA recruitment exams have also come to light. Even the issue of OBC and Maratha reservations has not been effectively addressed by the government. Is it inappropriate to complain that the government has betrayed the people of Maharashtra?
The people of Maharashtra are not naive not to realize the failure and ineffectiveness of the Maha Vikas Aghadi government which failed to bring relief to them but only pointed the finger at the Center to hide its ineffectiveness. Although pointing the finger at the Center can bring good publicity to the alliance government, in the long run, there is no doubt that these three parties will appear ‘anti-Maharashtra’ in the eyes of the people.
(The writer is the main spokesperson for Maharashtra BJP)
The opinions expressed above are those of the author.
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