LEADING A roadshow for the Congress in the western suburbs Thursday evening, Parliamentarian from Guna in Madhya Pradesh and former Union minister Jyotiraditya Scindia said Mumbai’s residents, caught between two allies pointing fingers at each other amid election-time mudslinging, would look for an alternative on the polling day.
Scindia led a roadshow from Saki Naka to Jogeshwari, endorsing four Congress candidates.
“Today, the BMC is riddled with scams and corruption. That is not acceptable to Mumbaikars. People will vote for the Congress, as they want to be rid of such a betrayal,” he told The Indian Express.
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The MP added, “The Sena and BJP leaders have been calling each other mafia and goons. What good can they do for the city?”
Scindia also fired a salvo at Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, saying the government only made announcements but no development was visible on the ground. “What transparency and accountability are they talking about now? They have been party to all the scams that took place in the BMC as an ally to the ruling Shiv Sena for the past 20 years,” he said.
Ridiculing the BJP leaders’ claims of a Modi wave in Mumbai, Scindia said, “In the four wards I visited during the show, there was no Modi wave. There are only holograms. Locals are facing lots and lots of civic issues — from water shortage to bad roads to lack of proper toilets. Congress candidates have been working at the ground level to get these resolved, I could see that.”
Ironically, majority of the locals in the areas Scindia visited did not immediately recognise the MP.
The roadshow, which began from Sakinaka, went up to Jogeshwari and culminated in a public meeting at Janata Colony. Apart from Scindia and Mumbai Congress chief Sanjay Nirupam, senior Mumbai Congress leader Suresh Shetty also participated in the roadshow.
Saheblal Kanojia from Marol village in Andheri, who was walking right behind the vehicle in which Scindia and other leaders were standing, recognised Shetty and Nirupam but only recognised Scindia as “Delhi ke bade neta (big politician from Delhi)”. “I don’t know his name, I was told that a big politician is coming for campaigning,” said Kanojia.
Zuleka Patel and Asma Karim, both residents of Bandra plot in Jogeshwari, too did not recognise Scindia. “We are here to inform these politicians about the problems we are facing in this area. Our area has become a safe haven for drug peddlers. Water shortage is a major issue too. We hope Rahul (Gandhi) ji will help us,” Patel said, pointing at Scindia.
Scindia was also scheduled to meet representative of Mumbai’s business community, traders and shopkeepers but the meet had to be cancelled after the leader lost time as the cavalcade negotiated thick traffic following his campaign in Jogeshwari.