BARELY A month after it took charge, the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government, headed by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, has found itself hitting some controversial notes in the public domain, be it regarding some current affairs or implementing welfare measures.
Recently, Thackeray had compared the police action at Jamia Millia Islamia campus to the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre. He had said the “power of the youth was like a bomb”. The BJP had criticised the CM for his remarks, saying they were an “insult to martyrs”. Soon after, state Women and Child Development Minister Yashomati Thakur, a Congress leader from Mumbai, was quoted as saying, in a widely circulated video clip, “They (the new ministers) have just taken oath and are yet to make money.”
Her statement was prominently carried by Saamana, the Sena mouthpiece. Thakur, however, clarified that she was repeating what Raosaheb Danve, former BJP state president, had once said during a speech. Kirit Somaiya, a BJP leader, has lodged a complaint against Thakur with the State Election Commission.
Another Shiv Sena minister, Abdul Sattar, made news for his reported resignation even before he had assumed office. He was also involved in an issue with Sena leader Chandrakant Khaire over zilla parishad elections in Aurangabad. Khaire called him a “traitor”, which was again carried by Saamana on its front page.
“I have given information to the CM about those who created rumours about me being unhappy. After meeting the CM, I am now satisfied and there is no question of unhappiness,” he had said. Cabinet Minister for Housing Jitendra Awhad, an NCP leader, also found himself in the news after Somaiya reportedly lodged a complaint to Mumbai Police regarding the ‘Free Kashmir’ placard that was raised during a protest at the Gateway of India in Mumbai.
Somaiya said he had demanded action against the minister for protesting at the Gateway without permission. “The action should be taken against the minister, as per the provisions of the law,” Somaiya told The Indian Express on Wednesday, when asked if he was seeking Awhad’s arrest.
Senior Congress leader Vijay Wadettiwar, who was assigned Other Backward Classes (OBC) Welfare Ministry, skipped the cabinet meeting on Tuesday, and also missed Wednesday’s special Assembly session. He is reportedly unhappy with his ministerial berth. Keshav Upadhye, BJP spokesperson, said the government won’t last long, with ministers “raking up controversies” daily, adding that the government will “fall under its own weight”.