Pune: Enraged residents of the Tangewaale Colony gheraoed the guardian minister Chandrakant Patil and shouted slogans against him and the Bharatiya Janata Party government, alleging that he had come to the flood-affected areas only for photo-opportunities and taking selfies.
This colony is situated behind the canal and comprises of around 125 slums. There is just one road passing through the area. On Wednesday night, the water from the canal started gushing into the colony, along with water coming in through the front of the homes, resulting in some people being washed away.
Many residents have taken a strong stand and obstructed the road through which the minister's convoy was going to pass, at Araneshwar Chowk. Police had to intervene and calm down the angry residents and request them to allow Patil smooth passage.
Pune Mayor Mukta Tilak, local legislator Madhuri Misaal and some BJP councillors were present. The residents were hard to pacify and they kept shouting slogans condemning Patil.
The situation in Pune can be barely described as calm. In Katraj, which was heavily flooded, over 19 perished while several people have been injured and nine are missing. Private vehicles have been destroyed. Residents say, given the high death toll and the extensive property loss, the guardian minister should have been present at the scene and directed the rescue and relief operations.
"Instead, Patil rushed to New Delhi to negotiate in the seat-sharing talks with the Shiv Sena. He seemed more interested in appeasing his party seniors than wiping our tears," said an enraged resident.
Residents also say, since Wednesday, the night of the floods, they did not receive the kind of response that was expected of the administration. Due to this, Puneites are upset with their politicians, who they feel, are the least concerned about their welfare.