PTI Photo/Kamal Kishore
PTI Photo/Kamal Kishore

Mumbai: In an appeal to agitating communities for reservation quotas, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis argued Maharashtra has been at the leading state in terms of progress in agriculture, water conservation, investment, housing and other infrastructure areas and hence it is imperative to maintain the progressive image of the state. However, opposition Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) criticised Fadnavis led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government for its failure in several issues and not fulfilling poll promises.

Fadnavis delivered Independence Day speech from the forecourt of Mantralaya on Wednesday. His comments come against the backdrop of recent agitations by Maratha community and Dhangar nomadic tribes for reservation quotas. Fadnavis assured all communities and faiths that the government will not discriminate on grounds of caste, creed, religion or any other grounds. He said all communities should strive towards preserving the progressive image of the state as we need to take all the communities along while taking Maharashtra forward.

Commenting upon the scourge of drought that has been plaguing the state, the Chief Minister said, “The Jalyukt Shivar Abhiyan has ensured that 16,000 villagers have assured water source. The government has set a target of making 25,000 more villages drought free in the near future. The scheme has ensured assured water supply for crops in times of dry spells in monsoon season.”

Commenting upon the agriculture scenario in the state, the Chief Minister stated, as compared to the 15 year period between 1999 to 2014 procurement of food grains worth Rs 450 crore, the state in the last three years has made record break procurement of food grains worth Rs 8,000 crore.

Ashok Chavan, president of Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) targeted Narendra Modi led union BJP government and Fadnavis led state government. Chavan said, “BJP government failed to give justice to the farmers. In the regime of BJP, more than 45,000 farmers had committed suicide at national level whereas more than 15 thousand farmers from Maharashtra has committed suicide.”

Chavan, as well as Jayant Patil, state president of NCP, especially criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s speech delivered on the occasion of independence day. Chavan said, it was last speech of Modi from the Red Fort and after 2019 Lok Sabha poll, Congress will be in power and the PM of Congress will address the nation. Patil said, Next speech on from the Red Fort will be about common man and his issues will be reflected from the next Prime Minister which will be certainly not from the BJP.

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