Mumbai: Even as two-thirds of Maharashtra is reeling under a severe drought, the Devendra Fadnavis government is planning to start work on the mid-sea memorial to Chhatrapati Shivaji. According to Vinayak Mete, chairman of the Shivaji memorial committee, the work will begin from Wednesday; the machinery required for construction was scheduled to reach the spot on Tuesday night.
With that, the two allies ruling the state appear to have swapped their roles, with Uddhav Thackeray, president of the Shiv Sena, pitching for construction of the Ram Mandir at Ayodhya, while the BJP is committed to completing the construction of the Shivaji memorial.
The BJP is seeking to woo the Sena’s Marathi voters with this move and, at the same time, Fadnavis is trying to dilute the rage within the Maratha community against his party by beginning work on the memorial, a year before the general election. The tallest statue in the world will depict Shivaji on a horse, holding a sword in his right hand. The monument will be 190 metres high.