Supporters of BJP MLAs Mahesh Landge and Laxman Jagtap rejected a proposal for developing three DP roads in Wakad in the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) on Thursday.
Two proposals worth Rs 104 crore were placed before the civic standing committee by Shiv Sena member Rahul Kalate, who is from Wakad. In last week’s civic meeting, members supporting Landge had backed Kalate’s proposal for constructing a school and developing a DP road in Wakad. However, at Thursday’s meeting, supporters of both Landge and Jagtap joined hands and rejected the Sena leader’s proposal.
Kalate had contested against BJP leader Laxman Jagtap in the state Assembly elections. After BJP members considered close to Landge in the civic standing committee supported Kalate’s proposal last week, it had angered the Jagtap camp, which had complained to senior BJP leaders such as former chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and state unit chief Chandrakant Patil, said sources.
“Last week, our group had supported Kalate’s road construction proposal. But today, both the groups voted against the proposal,” said Kartik Landge, brother of Mahesh Landge.
While Kartik Landge denied that there was a feud between the two, he admitted that the issue had received attention from senior BJP leaders.
“There was pressure from top leaders for the two groups to work together and present a picture of unity, otherwise it would send out a wrong image of the party…,” he said.
Jagtap, however, said, “I am not fully aware why the proposal was rejected by the standing committee. But some members have told me that an inflated estimate of the road was submitted and therefore, there was a need to revise the proposal”.
Kalate alleged that the ruling BJP was “playing politics” with the issue of development. “Just because I had contested the election from Chinchwad, my proposals for road construction are being rejected because the BJP enjoys majority in the civic body. MLA Laxman Jagtap is behind this move….BJP’s behaviour only shows that the party is against development. Wakad is close to the IT hub…. thousands of office-goers and students use the roads which are in bad shape. The condition has only worsened during the monsoon. I have no other option but to complain to the chief minister about this,” he said.
Kalate said his proposal was in line with budgetory provisions. “The PCMC commissioner’s budget had also made a provision for these roads…,” he said.
Municipal Commissioner Shravan Hardikar said he had made a provision for the roads in his budget but didn’t know why the proposal was rejected. “…The committee can answer the question,” he said.
Meanwhile, Mahesh Landge denied that he was resigning as BJP’s Pimpri-Chincwhad unit president, in the wake of speculation on the issue.