June 3, 2011 1:03:00 am
Chiefs on shaKy ground
Elections to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation may be less than a year awaythe elections are due in early 2012but the Mumbai unit chiefs of the three major parties are on shaky ground. Mumbai Congress chief Kripashankar Singh (in pic),who has been battling a slew of allegations,is said to be on his way out. Singh has got into trouble over his alleged links with former Jharkhand chief minister Madhu Koda,his son Narendra Mohans alleged dealings with DB Realty group and the allegation that he holds two PAN cards. His counterpart in the BJP,Raj Purohit,too got into trouble for his remarks against Ankita Rane,a girl from Thane who had photographed a pani puri vendor appearing to urinate into a vending vessel. After his controversial comments,the BJP asked Purohit to restrict his media appearances. NCP Mumbai chief Narendra Verma is also under fire from his own party men.
Janata Darbar fiasco
Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavans first Janata Darbar programme in Mumbai ended in a fiasco. To start with,Chavan,who was to inaugurate the programme,arrived late. After the mandatory speeches by Congress functionaries,the Chief Minister began accepting petitions from the people. However,after attending to a few petitions,Chavan left at noon,citing other commitments. People who had waited all day to submit their petitions rushed to him,resulting in much confusion. After Chavan left,the angry petitioners gave the Congress functionaries an earful. Worse was to follow. A delegation of the handicapped staged a sit-in protest at the office of Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee chief Manikrao Thakre,angry that they couldnt meet Chavan. To soothe these frayed tempers,Thakre was forced to give them a patient hearing.
Cong,NCP woo Dalits
The Congress and the NCP,unlikely to have a pre-poll tie-up for the forthcoming local body elections,are trying to outdo each other to woo Dalits. They are jittery at the prospect of losing the Dalit votes to the Republican Party of India,led by Ramdas Athawale. Athawale broke almost two decades of association with the Congress and later,the NCP,to indicate that he would join hands with the Shiv Sena-BJP. While the NCP is holding a Social Justice Conference in Mumbai on June 10 to reach out to the Dalits,the Congress has sought 50 per cent representation across sectors for Dalits,tribals,minorities,denotified and nomadic tribes,other backwards,handicapped and other weaker sections.
Constable held for rape
The Maharashtra polices image took another hit when a constable was arrested for allegedly raping a woman trainee constable. The woman constable alleged that Yuvaraj Kamble,a drill inspector with the Maharashtra police in Kolhapur,called her to his house in January on the pretext of giving her notes and raped her. Kamble was suspended this month. In an attempt at controlling the damage,Home Minister R R Patil transferred the Kolhapur district superintendent of police,suspended two police officers and announced that a lady IPS officer would be appointed to investigate the case.
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