Maharashtra delaying drought declaration as it lacked funds, says State Congress president Ashok Chavan

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Mumbai | Published: October 25, 2018 1:04:56 AM

The Congress in Maharashtra Wednesday alleged that the BJP-led state government was delaying the declaration of drought due to lack of funds which was a result of a "fiscal mismanagement".

Maharashtra Congress president Ashok Chavan

The Congress in Maharashtra Wednesday alleged that the BJP-led state government was delaying the declaration of drought due to lack of funds which was a result of a “fiscal mismanagement”. State unit Congress president Ashok Chavan also demanded that the government declare drought without any delay and stop using terms such as “drought-like”.

“There is no legal definition of ‘drought-like’. The government can either declare a drought or declare water scarcity,” the former chief minister said while addressing a rally under “Jan Sangahrsh” Yatra of the Congress at Ausa in Latur district, around 485 kms from the state capital.

“The government has delayed the announcement of drought due to lack of funds which was a fallout of financial mismanagement by the BJP-led government,” he alleged. The third phase of the Yatra was kicked off from the temple town of Tuljapur in Osmanabd district.

A Congress leader said the campaign was aimed at “exposing the false promises made by the state government” to the people, which will mainly focus on the Marathwada region. Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge, former Union home minister Shivraj Patil, ex-chief ministers Sushilkumar Shinde and Prithviraj Chavan participated in the yatra.

Chavan alleged that Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis was playing into hands of a coterie of selct advisors and administrators. “Latur district is suffering from severe drought. Despite this, the Chief Minister has chosen to use misleading words such as ‘drought-like’ situation to deceive the people,” he alleged. He said the government should declare drought in the north Maharashtra and Marathwada, as these regions are reeling under severe water scarcity.

Chavan and other leaders of Congress interacted with farmers in Chalburga village. The state Congress president also criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his claim that the BJP-led NDA government has constructed more number of affordable houses that the previous Congress regime.

“The prime minister claimed that the previous UPA government had built only 25 lakh houses in the ten years of its rule whereas the NDA government built 2.5 crore houses in just four years.

“However, the reality is that the UPA government had built almost 25 lakh houses every year, whereas the NDA government has failed to build even a few lakh houses during the last four years,” he claimed. Chavan claimed that the BJP and its alliance partner Shiv Sena have raked up the issue of the construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya with an eye on future polls.

On a controversy over the removal of two top officers of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), Chavan said the public feud in the agency has damaged its credibility and reputation. “The ongoing unprecedented tussle within the CBI is an indication of how this government has politicised the prestigious investigating agency and misused the state machinery for a political vendetta,” claimed Chavan. The Jan Sangharsh Yatra will travel across 27 Vidhan Sabha constituencies in Marathwada region.

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