Mumbai, May 22:
BJP staged ‘Maharashtra Bachao Andolan’ (Save Maharashtra agitation), as a protest against the Shiv Sena-headed Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government’ alleged failure to contain the horrific spread of COVID-19, through out the state, on Friday.
Former chief minister and present leader of the Opposition Devendra Fadnavis along with former minister Vinod Tawde and Mumbai BJP president Mangal Prabhat Lodha held protest at the state party office in Nariman point, in South Mumbai holding placards and sporting black face mask and black ribbon.
Another BJP MLA Ashish Shelar, accompanied by party workers, was at a party office in the suburbs where they staged a ‘’dharna’’ holding placards with messages critical of the MVA government over its handling of the COVID-19 crisis in Maharashtra which has recorded over 30,000 cases so far.
The BJP had given a call for “Maharashtra Bachao” agitation asking party workers to protest against the government outside their homes adhering to social distancing norms amid the coronavirus-enforced lockdown.
BJP had also urged people to stand in balcony wearing black dress holding playcards to denounce Maharashtra Government for the “mess” over Coronavirus...increasing number of deaths, including the deaths of policemen, doctors, health workers and “inadequate” facilities offered by the state government.
In districts like Wardha, Yavatmal, the BJP workers also burnt cotton, as a mark of resentment against inadequate remunerative prices offered by the state government under monopoly procurement scheme. The agitations were also held in various districts and talukas by BJP workers who submitted memorandums to tehsildars listing out their demands.
BJP claimed that the state government has failed to contain the Coronavirus pandemic. While there was a need to conduct over 10,000 tests per day, the administration was conducting hardy 4000 to 5000 tests per day and total administration was in a mess.
Meanwhile, the Congress, the Shiv Sena and the NCP - all constituents of the ruling coalition - hit back at the BJP on their social media platforms. State Congress spokesman Sachin Sawant wondered how the BJP can think of politics at the time of a crisis when doctors, nurses, police and the administration are fighting an enemy called coronavirus. “Ahmedabad till Thursday had recorded 9,449 positive cases and 619 deaths. Will the BJP do a “Gujarat Bachao andolan” and ask for the President’’s rule in the state,” he asked.
NCP leaders used the hashtag MaharashtradrohiBJP (Maharashtra treacherous BJP) to hit out at the opposition party. The Shiv Sena, in an editorial in its mouthpiece ‘’Saamana’’, said the BJP’’s agitation against the Thackeray-led government at the time of a health crisis will boomerang on the opposition party.
Raju Vernekar is a Media Professional based in Mumbai and is a regular contributor of Imphal Times. He had served as Chief Reporter at Free Press Journal (1996 – 2015 ). His Activities includes writing for different news papers, script writing/production for TV channels, Films Division. Writing poems in Marathi, Hindi, English, Guiding mass media students and helping people to solve their problems. Raju may be contacted at [email protected]