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Thursday, July 19, 2018

Cabinet nod to projects day after NCP threat

Stepping up the pressure ahead of the elections, Pawar on Wednesday had threatened to pull out of the government.

Mumbai | Published: January 10, 2014 3:30:19 am

A day after Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar targeted CM Prithviraj Chavan over delays in decision-making, the Maharashtra Cabinet on Thursday cleared several projects — most of them pertaining to NCP-led departments.
After reviewing pending proposals from all departments Wednesday evening, Chavan sought the Cabinet’s nod for 10 proposals on Thursday — six of them belonging to NCP-led departments, including the home department’s proposal for clearing the recommendations of a Cabinet sub-committee on police transfers.
A proposal for expansion of the Nashik-based Ozar airport — a project which Nashik’s Guardian Minister Chhagan Bhujbal has been pushing — was also approved.
Headed by Maharashtra Home Minister R R Patil, the Cabinet sub-committee had recommended that the state government should retain the power to transfer police officers of and above the rank of Superintendent of Police, while those below this rank could be transferred by the Police Establishment Board.
A contentious proposal of the NCP-led medical education department permitting homeopathy practitioners to prescribe allopathic drugs after undertaking a certified pharmacology course also got the Cabinet’s nod.
Two proposals of the higher and technical education department were also cleared.
Despite objections from some ministers, the Cabinet approved a proposal of the Bhujbal-led Public Works Department for accommodating contractual staff working at various MLA hostels in government service. Two populist proposals of the Congress-led agriculture department — providing 25 per cent additional grant for lining of farm ponds and distributing Rs 645 crore funds received from Centre to drought-affected farmers — were also approved.
A senior Congress minister said Ajit Pawar did not say much during Thursday’s meeting. The minister said the manner in which the government had given in to the NCP had set a wrong precedent.
Sources said more projects were likely to be cleared at the Cabinet meeting next week.
Stepping up the pressure ahead of the elections, Pawar on Wednesday had threatened to pull out of the government. He had said that the delays in decision-making would affect the parties’ poll prospects.

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