A war of words broke out between Shiv Sena and BJP, ruling coalition partners in Maharashtra, over allocation of funds for Mumbai in the Budget which was presented in the Assembly on Wednesday.
A Shiv Sena leader’s comments that Mumbai has not received sufficient funds invited a strong reaction from BJP which said the remarks show “ignorance” on part of the junior ally, which it claimed, wants to delink the financial capital from the rest of Maharashtra.
“If Shiv Sena says we have ignored Mumbai, it shows their ignorance. Thinking of dividing the state is wrong. If (Shiv Sena MLC Neelam) Gorhe’s comments suggest that Mumbai is separate from Maharashtra, then this mentality is condemnable,” BJP MLA Ashish Shelar told reporters here.
Earlier in the day, Gorhe had termed the Budget as a “question mark” for Mumbai and said the metropolis has not been given a sufficient share in the maiden Budget of the BJP- led Government.
“We have a few concerns about this Budget. It is a question mark as far as Mumbai is concerned and the city has not been given sufficient share. While the overall Budget is good, it is not sufficient (in terms of fund allocation) for Mumbai and other big cities,” the Sena legislator said.
With the kind of tax money that goes to New Delhi from Mumbai, what the city has received is insufficient, she told reporters.
Shelar said it seems Sena has not properly studied the Budget, which has looked into several issues concerning Mumbai.
“They haven’t studied the Budget properly. Once they do, they will realise that we have allocated money for Shivaji Maharaj statue, Rs 100 crore has been set aside for Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar memorial, money has been provided for the revamp of Sanjay Gandhi National Park and to provide WiFi services to Mumbaikars.
“We have spoken about developing ST bus depots and abolition of LBT (local body tax) will be a big relief to Mumbai residents as well,” the BJP leader said.