Mumbai: The budget session of the Maharashtra legislature, beginning here from Monday, is likely to be a stormy affair with the opposition Congress-NCP vowing to corner the BJP-led government on issues like farm crisis, jobs, loan waiver and the Bhima-Koregaon violence.
The budget will be presented on March 9.
In the last few days, opposition leaders have met more than once to deliberate and fine-tune strategy to be adopted on the floor of the House. They have identified certain issues to be highlighted in the legislature.
It is learnt that farmer suicides, delay in the farm loan waiver implementation, allegations of land grabbing and conflict of interest against Tourism Minister Jaykumar Raval, Kamala Mills Compound fire and alleged attempts to cover up corruption in the Shiv Sena-ruled Mumbai civic body are among the issues that will be taken up by the opposition parties.
The opposition has charged the Devendra Fadnavis government with “all-round failure” and alleged it was busy holding events like ‘Magnetic Maharashtra’ (a business summit).
They have also demanded a `white paper’ on investments made in the state and sought answers from Fadnavis on what happened to investments promised during the ‘Make in India’ event held two years ago.
Another issue to be highlighted is the death of farm labourers due to spraying of pesticides in Yavatmal district.
Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil of the Congress has said the Special Investigation Team probe into the case favours pesticide companies and not farmers.
There is “tremendous resentment” among the youths in the state over Maharashtra Public Service Commission (MPSC) recruitments, Vikhe Patil claimed.
“MPSC results are not being declared (on time) and recruitments have come to a standstill. There are 24,000 vacancies in teaching department alone.
“Similarly, investments have taken a beating. The government has admitted that there is no progress in the investments earlier announced by Taiwan-based contract manufacturer Foxconn,” the senior Congress MLA said.
“Tall claims made by Fadnavis about investments and the employment they will generate have been exposed,” he said.
Meanwhile, the government has said 31.32 lakh farmers, out of the eligible 47.73 lakh, have benefited till now from the loan waiver scheme, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Shetkari Sanman Yojana.
An amount of Rs 12,362 crore has been transferred to the bank accounts of these farmers. Also, Rs 23,102 crore has been sanctioned for the eligible farmers, it has said.
According to government estimates, crops in three lakh hectares, spread over 3,724 villages in 19 districts, were affected by hailstorm and unseasonal rains that hit Marathwada and Vidarbha regions earlier this month.
The opposition is demanding Rs 50,000 per hectare compensation for affected farmers and has slammed the government for delay in damage assessment.
The state has said it will seek a financial aid of Rs 200 crore from the Centre to compensate farmers.
Vikhe Patil said the issue of Minimum Support Price (MSP) for agri crops will also be taken up in the House.
Meanwhile, the opposition leaders will also take the government to task on the Bhima-Koregaon issue.
Violence had erupted in Pune on January 1 when Dalit groups were marking the bicentenary of the Bhima-Koregaon battle in which the British defeated the Peshwas of Maharashtra, resulting in the death of one person.
The state government has ordered a judicial probe into the incident, which had triggered state-wide protests by Dalits.