The Opposition is all set to corner the state government in the monsoon session starting Monday over corruption charges against ministers, infighting among Cabinet ministers and alleged rise in crime rate.
As part of its floor management strategy, the Opposition plans to raise resignation of senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and former revenue minister Eknath Khadse last month over corruption charges and the tainted ministers in both the houses.
This will be the first full-fledged attack by the Opposition in the 20-month rule of the Fadnavis government.
“We had warned the government not to induct tainted legislators in the cabinet. Many of the newly inducted ministers face corruption charges. This is not expansion of the cabinet, but expansion of corruption. We have been hearing claims of zero tolerance towards corruption, but nothing has changed. This is perhaps the first government, where 50% of the ministers are facing corruption charges,” said Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil, leader of Opposition in the state Assembly.
The spat between rural development minister Pankaja Munde and chief minister Devendra Fadnavis after the cabinet expansion on Twitter, too, will be used to attack the government.
“The cabinet ministers as well as the two ruling parties are not leaving any opportunity to criticize each other. The road and de-silting scams will be raised used in the house to expose the corrupt alliance of the ruling party in the civic body,” said a Nationalist Congress Party leader, who was part of the meeting of the parties in Opposition on the eve of the session.
The Opposition will also raise the gang-rape and murder of a 14-year-old girl in Karjat taluka in Ahmednagar through an adjournment motion either on Monday or Tuesday.
Dhananjay Munde, leader of Opposition in the state council, visited the girl’s village on Sunday evening. It will also observe what stand ruling ally Shiv Sena takes over critical issues.
The Sena has always been up in arms against the government on certain issues and two of its leaders — Gulabrao Patil and Arjun Khotkar — have been at the forefront in raising their voice against the government.
With both of them inducted into the cabinet, the BJP leadership may expect some respite from dissent within.