Uddhav Thackeray strongly criticized the State government, accusing it of neglecting the demands of Anganwadi Sevikas. He lamented that the government seemed to have funds for acquiring MLAs and running advertisements but lacked the resources to support Anganwadi Sevikas. Uddhav voiced these concerns while visiting Azad Maidan near CSMT, where Anganwadi Sevikas had organized a Morcha to highlight their various demands.
Image from the Morcha of Anganwadi Sevikas at Azad Maidan. | Vijay Gohil
"I will visit Ayodhya when I feel like visiting"
Expressing his discontent, Uddhav stated, "I will go to Ayodhya to offer prayers to Lord Ram, but I don't need anyone's invitation. I will visit Ayodhya when I feel like visiting. However, upon returning home, I will question whether there is sufficient food for my children and whether the government has done anything for my family."
Uddhav Thackeray and fellow partymen during the Morcha of Anganwadi Sevikas at Azad Maidan. | Vijay Gohil
Uddhav emphasized the essential role played by Anganwadi Sevikas, who reach the depths of society and remote villages, yet the government lacks the financial commitment to compensate them. He highlighted the paradox of showcasing healthy ministers' photographs on banners while there are malnourished children in the state.
The Anganwadi Sevikas' strike
Anganwadi Sevikas have been on strike for the past month, staging an agitation at Azad Maidan on Savitribai Phule's birth anniversary. Uddhav asserted the collective power of their movement, stating, "There is calmness in the flame of the lamp, but when numerous flames come together, it turns into a torch with the power to topple the government."
Protestors from the Morcha of Anganwadi Sevikas at Azad Maidan. | Vijay Gohil
Referencing the recent election in Madhya Pradesh, Uddhav questioned whether the BJP's victory was attributed to the implementation of the 'Laadli Behna' campaign by Shivraj Singh Chavan. He drew parallels, asking if Anganwadi Sevikas were not considered "Behnas" by the government.
"Ram Mandir belongs to all parties"
Uddhav appealed to citizens not to vote for the BJP in 2024 and assured Anganwadi Sevikas that their demands would be met once Shiv Sena comes into power in the state. He asserted that the Ram Mandir belongs to all parties, emphasizing unity over its ownership.
Uddhav Thackeray during the Morcha of Anganwadi Sevikas at Azad Maidan. | Vijay Gohil
Lastly, Uddhav criticized the Union government for allocating funds for selfie points at railway stations, questioning whether that money could not have been directed towards supporting Anganwadi Sevikas.