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Maharashtra

Shiv Sena prepared to walk out of MVA, ‘if..’: Raut to rebels

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Making another effort to defuse the ongoing political crisis in Maharashtra, Shiv Sena MP and chief spokesperson Sanjay Raut made a conditional offer to the rebels about the party’s readiness to “walk out” of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA).

“We are ready to walk out of the MVA, provided the rebels return to Mumbai within 24 hours and hold discussions with the Shiv Sena,” Raut said, throwing yet another challenge to the group of revolters led by Minister Eknath Shinde.

He called upon the rebels’ group to stop communicating on social media or phone messages or letters or statements sitting in Assam, and like “true Shiv Sainiks, show the guts to come to Mumbai”.

“Come here within 24 hours. Sit before Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray Saheb and present your viewpoint to him. We shall definitely consider them,” Raut declared.

Nationalist Congress Party state President and Minister Jayant Patil said Raut must have made the statement after consulting the party leaders, but his colleague Chhagan Bhujbal said the Sena MP should have discussed it with MVA leaders before going public.

Congress President Nana Patole said the party is with the MVA and will support the CM till the very end in all his efforts to save the government.

“However, if a situation arises, we are prepared to sit in the Opposition benches, since we have got the mandate for the Opposition in the 2019 Assembly elections,” he added.

Senior NCP leader Praful Patel and veteran Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge said that the MVA government is “stable” and there’s no threat to the alliance.

“The BJP is playing all these games, trying to break the MVA. It would not have been possible for so many (Sena) MLAs to vanish to Gujarat and then to Assam without the support of BJP,” said Kharge.

Raut’s open dare to the rebel group came a day after Thackeray announced that he was “ready to quit as CM and also as Sena President” if the mutineers came to Mumbai and told him to do so, and Shinde reacted by demanding that the Sena should “quit the MVA” immediately.

The rebels’ group has claimed the support of “over 40” Sena MLAs, while the Sena is left with around 18 legislators, but has disputed the Shinde group’s contentions, saying everything will be clear only when all the deserters come to Mumbai.

An independent legislator on Thursday claimed that once the rebels return to Mumbai, they will all go to ‘Matoshri’ (Thackeray residence) and fall at the feet of CM Uddhav Thackeray.

Maharashtra

Mumbai: TISS students cancel BBC documentary show after BJYM protests

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Mumbai: The premier Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS)’s Progressive Students Forum cancelled the planned screening of the controversial BBC documentary on Prime Minister Narendra Modi after strong protests by the Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha activists, here on Saturday evening.

A student leader – declining to be quoted – said that the film and the projector could not be taken to the venue in view of the protests and pressures from the TISS management and the Mumbai Police.

“Accordingly, we decided to cancel the screening. However, we have forwarded the entire documentary to all the students and they are watching it on their gadgets like mobiles, laptops or tablets,” he told IANS, adding it has reached over 600 students on the TISS Deonar campus and outside.

The developments came even as the TISS management issued a stern ‘advisory’ on Thursday warning the students of strict action if they went ahead with the plans, followed by another circular this afternoon.

Unrelenting, the Progressive Students Forum (PSF) had said it was intended to be “a symbolic protest” against the government’s move to block access to the documentary and their move was in solidarity with other students’ organisations in campuses across the country.

The PSF’s defiant venture came after similar protests erupted in Delhi against the students of Delhi University and around 24 were detained on Friday, as some other institutions in different parts of the country also attempted similar screenings.

Mumbai unit Bharatiya Janata Party President Ashish Shelar had slammed the TISS-PSF plans to screen the documentary and urged the Maharashtra government to take action against the students for attempting to create law and order problems.

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Maharashtra

Mumbai Metro 6 line: Maha Govt urges Centre to provide 15 hectare land free of cost for carshed at Kanjurmarg

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Mumbai: In a significant move, the Shinde Fadnavis government has made a fresh appeal to the Centre to give no objection certificate for making available at free of cost 15 hectare of land for the construction of Metro 6 (Swami Samarth nagar-Vikhroli) carshed at Kanjurmarg in North East Mumbai. This is a fresh request made recently by the state government after it has decided to develop carshed for Metro 3 (Cuffe Parade-Bandra-SEEPZ) at Aarey Colony. The Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government had earlier urged the Centre to make available a total of 43.76 hectares land at Kanjurmarg for combined carshed for Metro 3, 4 and 6. However, the land was not transferred as the MVA government and the BJP-led government at the Centre were at loggerheads. 

Collector had issued order in 2020, withdrew later


On October 1, 2020, the Mumbai suburban district collector had issued an order handing over the possession of 102 acres of land to the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) for the construction of an integrated car shed for the Metro. However, the MVA government on August 30, 2022 told the Bombay High Court that the Mumbai suburban district Collector has withdrawn an earlier order allotting land in Kanjurmarg area for a carshed of Mumbai Metro. Thereafter, the court disposed off a Union government’s petition challenging the collector’s 2020 order. 

Proposal for metro 6 carshed sent to centre, no decision yet

Incidentally, after the Shinde Fadnavis government decided that the Metro 3 carshed will come up at Aarey Colony lifting the stay granted by the MVA government, the MMRDA had requested the state government to provide land at Kanjurmarg for the construction of Metro 6 line carshed. Thereafter, the state government sent its proposal to the Centre in this regard but there has been no decision yet.

A senior urban development minister officer told the Free Press Journal, ‘’The government earlier had sent a proposal to the Centre for handing over a total of 43.76 hectare of land in Kanjurmarg comprising 37.32 hectare from land number 657 and 6.44 hectare from land number 6.44 hectare for a combined carshed for Metro 3, 4 and 6 lines. Now, the land requirement is reduced to 15 hectare as the Metro 3 carshed will come up in Aarey Colony. The government is pursuing its proposal with the union commerce ministry.’’

Metro 6 line to connect Eastern and Western highways

The 14.4 km long Mumbai Metro line 6 (Swami Samarth Nagar-Jogeshwari-Vikhroli-Kanjurmarg) will connect Eastern and Western Express highways through Jogeshwari Vikhroli Link Road (JVLR) through 13 metro stations with an estimated cost of ₹6,700 crore. The metro line will facilitate commuters to reduce the travel time on the route by 35-45 minutes. 

The 13 metro stations will include Swami Samarth Nagar, Adarsh Nagar, Jogeshwari (W), JVLR, Shyam Nagar, Maha Kali Caves, SEEPZ Village, Saki Vihar, Rambaug, Powai Lake, IIT Powai, KanjurMarg and Vikhroli (EEH)

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Maharashtra

Nashik MLC polls – BJP maintains taut suspense on stance

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Mumbai: With barely 48 hours left before polling on Monday, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) continued to maintain suspense over whether it would support Congress rebel Satyajeet Tambe contesting the Nashik Graduates’ constituency for the Maharashtra Legislative Council (MLC) elections.

The Opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) alliance of Congress, Nationalist Congress Party and Shiv Sena (UBT) is supporting a BJP rebel, Shubhangi Patil, for the January 30 elections.

BJP MLC Ram Shinde on Saturday revealed that the party would decide on its strategy later tonight, while BJP’s Ahmednagar MP Sujay Vikhe-Patil hinted that the party is capable of “turning the tables overnight” in the elections.

Earlier, state BJP President Chandrashekhar Bawankule had dropped broad hints of extending support to Tambe, saying any decision of “the local (party) leaders would be acceptable”, while emphasising that Patil will not get a single BJP vote.

However, the party has not announced its decision clearly so far, even as discussions are reportedly on between Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and other senior leaders.

A fortnight ago, the Congress got a rude shock when its official nominee and three-time MLC Sudhir Tambe did not file his nomination and instead propped up his son Satyajeet Tambe as an independent candidate.

The party hit back by suspending Sudhir Tambe, expelling his son Satyajeet Tambe and followed up by en masse sacking the Ahmednagar District Congress Committee.

Besides Nashik Graduates’ constituency, the other seats going to polls include Amravati Graduates’ constituency and Nagpur, Aurangabad and Konkan — all Teachers’ constituencies.

In Nagpur, the main battle is between sitting MLC Nago Ganar, contesting as Independent supported by BJP, against Congress’ MVA-backed Sudhakar Adbale of Vidarbha Madhyamik Shikshak Sangh. Shikshak Bharti’s Rajendra Zade and NCP rebel Satish Itkelwar are also in the fray.

In Amravati, sitting BJP MLC Ranjeet Patil is contesting against Congress’ MVA nominee Dhiraj Lingade.

In Aurangabad, sitting NCP MLC Vikram Kale is locking horns with BJP’s Kiran Patil.

In Konkan, the MVA-supported Peasants & Workers Party’s sitting MLC Balaram Patil is pitted against BJP’s Dnyaneshwar Mhatre.

As the campaigning ended on Saturday, both the MVA and the ruling BJP exuded full confidence that they will make a clean sweep of the five seats in Monday’s elections.

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