This Week Maharashtra: Called a gimmick,performed by Oppn too

Even while Bal Thackeray and Anna Hazare were calling Rahul Gandhi’s blink-and-you’ll-miss-it visit to a village in drought-hit Satara a publicity gimmick

Written by Kavitha Iyer | Published: May 4, 2012 3:25 am

Called a gimmick,performed by Oppn too

Even while Bal Thackeray and Anna Hazare were calling Rahul Gandhi’s blink-and-you’ll-miss-it visit to a village in drought-hit Satara a publicity gimmick,Opposition leaders were touring or announcing tours to regions affected by water scarcity. Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly Eknath Khadse has initiated a three-day tour of Ahmednagar,Latur and Osmanabad; his Legislative Council counterpart Vinod Tawde completed a four-day visit of over 40 villages on a motorbike; Uddhav Thackeray announced his own one-day tour of Yavatmal; his son Aditya chose to visit Jawhar in Thane. Meanwhile,the state government admitted the water scarcity situation is alarming in some districts,after Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan conducted a video-conference with collectors and divisional commissioners.

Cong plus sena minus NCP

The Congress,after crying hoarse at the NCP’s apparent ditching of secular principles to ally with the Shiv Sena and the BJP in zilla parishad presidentship polls,is now engaged in building some complex local equations with the Sena. Until it was stayed by the Supreme Court on Tuesday,the Congress won the Leader of the Opposition position in the Thane Municipal Corporation with the Sena’s support even though the NCP has greater strength. This week,the Congress accepted the Sena’s support alongside that of Independents to install its mayor in Chandrapur in Vidarbha. The BJP was left irked,but not surprised — the Sena had already supported the Congress in picking a chairman of the key standing committee of the Nashik Municipal Corporation.

Bachchan the blogger

He vented his relief and sense of vindication on his blog when the Swedish “Deep Throat” revealed his identity in an interview 25 years after the Bofors scam was first reported. Soon after,Amitabh Bachchan also expressed his discomfort at the way Mumbai is headed,referring to a person walking “on the wrong side of a road with a mobile stuck to his neck”,carelessly discarded plastic bags and more. “The system must be entrusted with it. They have the power to do it. Yes,there are individual very laudable efforts too. Few and far. Talk about this on public platforms and be sure to receive cynical and laughable reactions. It requires mass reaction and involvement. Discipline is discipline. There can be no alternatives to it,” he wrote on Tuesday,Maharashtra Day.

Cricketer and politician

One more politician entered the cricketing world when Aditya Thackeray was elected president of a local cricket club associated with the Mumbai Cricket Association. While it’s known that support of a club is mandatory for anybody preparing for a long stint in cricket administration,the young man refused to speak about his election,preferring to text that he’s not entering the field for the “MCA politics of cricket” but only as a cricketer and cricket enthusiast. Aditya has been a member of the club since 2005. He joins the company of politicians such as Sharad Pawar,Vilasrao Deshmukh and Manohar Joshi,who were associated with MCA-affiliated bodies before going on to play larger roles in cricket politics.

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