By QUAID NAJMI
MUMBAI: As the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government completed its first year in office on Saturday, the Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party slammed its ‘lustreless performance’ and alleged that the Constitutional machinery in the state has collapsed.
In a scathing attack, Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Devendra Fadnavis, dismissed the MVA’s one-year as a “total failure” by saying: “The two recent court rulings in the Arnab Goswami and Kangana Ranaut cases clearly reflect that there is a breakdown of the Constitutional machinery and abuse of power.”
However, in the same breath, he declared that the BJP would “not demand President’s Rule in the state”, but made it clear that the Opposition would continue to play its role effectively, pull up the government when it errs, and even take to the streets if necessary.
Adding that the BJP doesn’t fully endorse Goswami or Ranaut’s views, but it also doesn’t agree with the manner in which the government headed by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray is hounding those who speak against the MVA regime and crushing dissent.
“The government is cracking down on anyone speaking out against them like RTI activists, social media posts or mediapersons. The Supreme Court and Bombay High Court have clearly observed that there is gross misuse of power. There seems to be an undeclared emergency,” Fadnavis contended.
Giving the MVA a report card as “failure on all fronts”, the BJP leader said the ruling Shiv Sena-Nationalist Congress Party-Congress has only done one job – to scrap projects launched by the former BJP-led government in the state.
Stating that there is absolutely “no coordination among the three alliance partners,” Fadnavis reiterated that the MVA government was born out of treachery, indicating the BJP had not yet swallowed the fact it lost power in the changed political equations post-October 2019 Assembly elections.
“They (Shiv Sena) betrayed the BJP and the people of Maharashtra. They contested elections in alliance with (BJP) us, they sought votes in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s name, and then joined hands with the NCP-Congress,” he said.
Slamming Thackeray, Fadnavis said he had yet to see a CM who goes around “threatening the people” especially political opponents and the type of language he uses despite occupying a Constitutional post.
The reference was to the CM’s anniversary interview series with the Sena party newspaper ‘Saamana’ and ‘Dopahar Ka Saamana’ in which he mentioned his Hindutva.
In the interview, Thackeray commented on the BJP’s allegations that he had discarded ‘Hindutva’ over the past one year after taking over as CM.
“What do you mean, we have dropped ‘Hindutva’.. Is it a ‘dhoti’? Hindutva must be in the blood. We follow the ‘Hindutva’ taught by my father (the late Balasaheb Thackeray) and grandfather (the late Prabodhankar Thackeray). Don’t teach us ‘Hindutva’ It was Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj who unfurled the ‘saffron flag’ and laid the foundation of Hindavi Swaraj. We don’t follow the ‘Hindutva’ of ‘dalals’ (agents) in this land,” Thackeray said in his marathon interview.
Terming the government’s handling of the Covid pandemic as disastrous, Fadnavis pointed out how he had written more than 100 letters but they remained unacknowledged and the state has been pushed into a serious crisis arising from the coronavirus.
“Instead of criticizing the Opposition and those who speak out against the government, Thackeray should have discussed the state’s road-map for the next four years, the development, the direction it will take, how it will resolve the problems of the people, farmers, youth, women, etc But there was nothing of this sort,” rued Fadnavis.
On the occasion, the BJP Leader of Opposition (Council) Pravin Darekar released a ‘Black Book’ highlighting what he said all the failures of the government and how it has misled the people of the state for the past one year, while the party is holding press conferences in each district to highlight the ‘failures’ of the MVA government.