Maharashtra CM skips river rejuvenation event after controversy

Programme invite sent out by Team River March had mentioned the chief minister as the chief guest for the function

mumbai Updated: Mar 05, 2018 08:45 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Maharashtra,Devendra Fadnavis
Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis. (HT FILE )

Following controversy over a video on Mumbai’s rivers featuring him and other top officials of the government, chief minister Devendra Fadnavis gave the river rejuvenation programme at Dahisar a miss on Sunday.

The programme organised by River March Team scheduled to be held on Sunday morning was attended by Fadnavis’ wife Amruta, and other senior bureaucrats, but the CM did not attend it.

Speaking after a function, Fadnavis that he was not scheduled to attend the programme.

The programme invite sent out by Team River March had mentioned the chief minister as the chief guest for the function.

When asked about attending the event at Dahisar, Fadnavis said, “I was not going to attend it.”

Earlier this week, a music video called ‘Mumbai River Anthem’ about saving Mumbai’s four rivers featured the chief minister along with wife Amruta, state finance and forest minister Sudhir Mungantiwar, Mumbai civic commissioner Ajoy Mehta, and Mumbai police commissioner Datta Padsalgikar. The song is sung by singer Sonu Nigam, and Amruta Fadnavis herself.

It garnered much controversy with Congress spokesman Sachin Sawant questioning the use of the official residence of the Chief Minister to film a song, and accusing the BJP of misuse of power and government machinery.

Sawant said, “The explanation given by the CM is unconvincing. There is no reason for the post of chief minister to make such appearances.”

Following the controversy surrounding the music video, the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) on Wednesday clarified that the state government had nothing to do with the album. It also put the entire onus on the River March organisation saying that the organisation had approached CM and his wife for the same. Even the bureaucrats were approached by the organisation and the album was made by T-Series company, the clarification claimed.

While earlier this week BJP MLA Ram Kadam on behalf of the chief minister has clarified said the video was made by Isha Foundation, on Saturday he lashed out at the Congress and Sawant for their attacks on Fadnavis.

First Published: Mar 05, 2018 08:45 IST