Maharashtra govt should announce ₹50K-cr package, says BJPUpdated: May 23, 2020 00:10 IST
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) versus the Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) battle was on full public display on Friday as the former held its Maharashtra Bachao (Save Maharashtra) agitation with party workers across the state.
The BJP has also demanded an independent fiscal package worth ₹50,000 crore for farmers, daily wage earners in the state amid Covid-19 pandemic.
The Opposition party workers, wearing black masks, unfurled banners slamming the Uddhav Thackeray-led government over its handling of the crisis. Two months after the first coronavirus case was identified in the state, the BJP announced that it would no longer stay quiet and spoke out against the government’s “ineffectual” tackling of the pandemic.
As part of the agitation, state BJP unit party workers were seen shouting slogans against the state government and holding placards in videos on social media. The protests were held outside the party workers’ homes and party offices across the state. The protests are seen as a move to roll out a campaign to generate a sentiment against the state government.
The Shiv Sena and other ruling parties did not take this lightly and slammed the Opposition for playing politics amidst a full-blown disaster. By late afternoon, the BJP’s Maharashtra Bachao campaign and the state Congress’ Maharashtra Drohi (Maharashtra’s traitors) campaigns were viral on the social media, but the former was lagging behind the latter.
“The maximum number of coronavirus cases and maximum deaths are in Maharashtra. The public health system has completely collapsed due to the state government’s failures. For how long can we cooperate with the government. How much can the people tolerate?” asked Devendra Fadnavis, who protested along with his party colleagues outside the state BJP office.
A day earlier, Fadnavis had upped the ante targeting Thackeray directly as someone who was new and made “strategic failures” as he lacked “administrative experience”.
The former CM has also alleged that the state and the city have reduced testing of patients in a bid to bring down the Covid-19 positive cases. He has alleged that despite having a capacity of conducting 10,000 tests, the BMC was conducting only around 4,500 tests daily.
Yuva Sena chief and tourism minister Aaditya Thackeray, in response to BJP’s protest, tweeted, “One political party state unit has set a new low and a new world record — the only party in the world to indulge in politics and in spreading fear, hate and division when the world has forgotten all of it to help each other. This party has forgotten the pandemic.”
Re-tweeting another photo where children are wearing black clothes, holding BJP flags and protesting, Thackeray said, “Absolutely shameful, what lust for power politics can make leaders do. Making children stand in the heat, with their masks lowered, not covering their faces for a political protest when we need to keep them safe and indoors.”
“Maharashtra Drohi hashtag has become viral across the country because people saw the true picture of the BJP. In the face of such a horrific disaster, only they can think of politics…‘let people die, we want power’, is their mantra,” Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant said. NCP state chief and minister Jayant Patil said, “This [the protest] is truly treachery against the state.’’