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Girish Bapat supports Salisbury Park residents against BJP corporator over renaming civic garden

“I support the protest launched by residents of Salisbury Park over the renaming of the civic garden. The residents have fought for the garden and naming it after the father of a former BJP corporator is wrong,” Bapat told The Indian Express.

Written by Ajay Jadhav | Pune |
Updated: May 26, 2022 3:37:46 am
Over the last two months, the Salisbury Park Residents Forum has demonstrated silently, lit diyas, organised a car rally in protest etc. (Express Photo)

Pune BJP MP Girish Bapat has come out in support of the protest launched by Salisbury Park Residents Forum against former BJP corporator Shrinath Bhimale over renaming the corporation garden after his father.

The Pune Mahanagar Palika Udyan, located near Gool Poonawalla Garden, was inaugurated on November 25 last year. However, Bhimale in March put up a board naming the garden after his father, the late Yashwantrao Bhimale. Over the past two months, the Salisbury Park Residents Forum has demonstrated silently, lit diyas and organised a car rally in protest against this move.

“I support the protest launched by residents of Salisbury Park over the renaming of the civic garden. The residents have fought for the garden and naming it after the father of a former BJP corporator is wrong,” Bapat told The Indian Express.

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He said it was not the culture of BJP to name a civic property in the name of the relative of a local representative. “I have been a PMC (Pune Municipal Corporation) corporator for many terms but I never named any civic property after my relative or parents. I have asked the state BJP chief, Chandrakant Patil, to take action against Bhimale for going against the citizens’ wishes to name the garden after his father,” Bapat said.

The city MP said he was completely against naming civic properties after the relatives of local elected representatives except in cases where the relative has lost their life for the country or participated in the freedom struggle.

In the 1990s, the plot of land meant for a garden was leased out by the Pune Municipal Corporation. The land was illegally de-reserved and was to be handed over to a prominent city builder. Prakash Kardaley, resident editor of The Indian Express at the time, formed a committee under the Express Citizen’s Forum to magnify the issue and was joined by several residents, such as N P Bhog, Col V P Taneja (retd), Gopesh Mehta and late D R Briganza, among others.

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