Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatna (SSS) leader Raju Shetti on Tuesday hinted that his party would soon decide whether it will continue to be a part of the BJP-led Maharashtra government or not. The Lok Sabha MP from Hatkanangle said that he was “remorseful” for being part of the Fadnavis government. “What should be done about it (on being part of the state government) will be decided in the forthcoming meeting of the Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatna,” he said in Miraj about 385 km from Mumbai.
Shetti has been on a collision course with the BJP over the issue of agricultural reforms and has openly expressed his disappointment over the chaos in the procurement and delay in loan waiver for farmers. His influence in some districts of western Maharashtra had proved crucial for the BJP in increasing its tally during the General and Assembly elections. “The BJP-led government cannot take decisions that would benefit the farmers. The BJP is full of intellectuals who have no time for farmers,” Shetti alleged.
“This attitude is going to put the party in trouble in the coming days. The farmers are losing faith in this government and their strike is going to continue till the demands are met,” he said.
Shetti also targeted his one-time associate Sadabhau Khot for “working against the interests of farmers” in the ongoing strike. “Khot flaunts SSS badge but his actions are aimed at breaking the ongoing strike. He will have to come before the state working committee of the party and will be asked about his actions,” he said.
Khot is the only SSS leader who has been inducted in the state cabinet. Another party worker Ravikant Tupkar is the chairman of the state government’s textile corporation.