In a scathing attack on performance of Shiv Sena-controlled Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis today said the Sena did nothing for the Marathi people and only exploited them by appealing to emotions. Addressing a rally in Girgam in South Mumbai ahead of February 21 BMC elections, Fadnavis said, “You people (Shiv Sena) have given only verbal assurances to the people of the city and Marathi people for the last 20 years. But the grim reality is that they lack basic amenities and here in Girgam, water is supplied only for an hour. Is this development of the city? Please stop playing the emotional chord with Marathi people.”
Fadnavis also lashed out at Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray for his jibe about BJP’s promises on Ram Mandir in Ayodhya. “What the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya has to do with BMC elections? Why don’t you talk about the development agenda for Mumbai city? And Yes, our party has mentioned this issue (Ayodhya) in its manifesto for Uttar Pradesh polls,” he said. Sena was not focusing on issues of development and transparency because it had done nothing on these counts, while BJP had a development agenda that would transform the city, the Chief Minister said.
“We are constructing 200-km Metro network across the city of which work for 120 km has started and when complete, it would have the capacity to transport 70 lakh people, equal to capacity of suburban railway network….we are on fast forward mode to execute various railway projects including elevated railway corridors on Western and harbour line,” Fadnavis said.
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Fadnavis also targeted Sena over the bad condition of roads in Mumbai and said the irregularities and lack of transparency in the functioning of BMC was plaguing the city. In a dig over the alleged `de-silting scam’ in BMC, he said, “The way the work of de-silting of nullahs was carried out by the people of BMC and its caretakers, only (southern superstar) Rajinikanth could have done it (in such a non-feasible way).”
Addressing another campaign rally in Dadar later, Fadnavis said Shiv Sena had the maximum number of candidates with criminal records. “Which party has the maximum number, 63, of candidates (with criminal record)? Altogether 83 criminal offences were registered against these Sena candidates,” the CM said. Water-logging in Mumbai was due to corruption (in the Sena-led BMC), Fadnavis said. “People won’t fall prey to emotional issues,” the CM said. Work on MTHL trans-harbour link will be start soon, he said.