Mumbai: The Congress said Tuesday Mumbai and Maharashtra belong to all, but some people were trying to create Marathi and non-Marathi divide in the society. The party’s assertion came in the wake of Mumbai Congress president Sanjay Nirupam’s comments that the financial capital will come to a standstill and its people will not even get food to eat if the north Indian community in the metropolis decides to stop working.
Asked about Nirupam’s comments, which drew sharp reactions from the Shiv Sena and the Raj Thackeray-led MNS, Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) president Ashok Chavan said Mumbai and Maharashtra belong to all communities. “Mumbai and Maharashtra belong to all. Some people are trying to create Marathi and non-Marathi divide in the society,” he said, without taking anyone’s name.
Nirupam made the controversial statements while speaking at an event of north Indians in Nagpur Sunday. Chavan was speaking to reporters at Sinnar enroute to Sangamner in Nashik district, about 200km from Mumbai, on the last leg of the party’s `Jan Sangharsh Yatra’. Asked about water scarcity in parts of Maharashtra due to deficient rainfall this monsoon season, the former chief minister said the Devendra Fadnavis government has no plan in place to tackle such a situation.
“There is no planning at all. This government has a habit of digging a well when one felt thirsty,” Chavan said. To a query on the NCP holding a meeting to discuss its candidates for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, he said, “Unless both the Congress and NCP don’t discuss seat-sharing arrangement and deliberations don’t reach a conclusion, there is no point in talking about one party contesting individual seats.”
“We haven’t got any proposal (on seat-sharing) from the NCP so far,” the Congress leader said. The Congress and the Sharad Pawar-led NCP were in an alliance for 15 years, but they parted ways ahead of the October 2014 assembly polls in Maharashtra.