Sending a significant and strong message to Shiv Sena, the Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has asserted that the Home portfolio, he is presently holding, will be retained by himself. The message is likely to put Shiv Sena in an uneasy situation as the party was demanding the crucial portfolio as a pre-condition to be part of BJP Government.
At his meet the press programme on Monday, a barrage of questions were asked to the Chief Minister Fadnavis about the coalition government with the Shiv Sena the details of which have not been disclosed yet.
When a reporter pointedly asked whether the Home portfolio, which is with the CM himself now, will be given to the Shiv Sena, Fadnavis quipped in his trade mark witty style – “Well, Home Ministry as you pointed out is right now with me…. and maybe I will keep it!”
While the Sena has been making its demands public — like the post of Deputy Chief Minister, important portfolios be shared equally, a clamouring for the Home or Finance Ministry, the BJP and Fadnavis himself have been circumspect on all the issues.
CM assures to resolve journalists’ grievances:
Monday’s unprecedented press conference began on an unusual note with a senior member of the Nagpur Union of Working Journalists, Pradeep Kumar Moitra, reading out of the long standing grievances and demands of the area’s journalists.
“Unlike most other professions, journalists are deprived of post retirement pension which really leads to hardships in later life. Though we are an important pillar of the Indian Democracy, and work hard to fulfill our role, why should we be kept deprived of this important facility?” he questioned.
Fadnavis promised to look into this matter as soon as possible and prompted the journalists present to keep regular feedback about this issue so it does not go onto the backburner.
So was also the request for a Press Club on the line of Mumbai Press Club. This request too was greeted with a green signal.
The bottom line is: Nagpur press could now hope for “Achche din” soon!
Decision on Vidarbha Statehood at an appropriate time:
“Bharatiya Janata Party will adopt the same process for creating separate Vidarbha State which the party had adopted while forming the smaller states of Jharkhand, Uttarakhand and Chhattisgarh. BJP will not commit the same blunder which the Congress party had committed while dividing Andhra Pradesh,” announced the Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and reiterated that the decision on Vidarbha Statehood will be taken at an appropriate time.
Fadnavis further said that the Maharashtra Government had not accepted change in name of Belgaon and a resolution in this regard was sent to Central Government. The resolution will be pursued in right earnest. “We have cleared our stand that the name of Belgaon should be as it is instead of Belgavi. The Central Government has taken the necessary steps in this connection. Similarly, the State Unit of BJP had also strongly protested the change of Belgaon’s name. We will have to put our stand in Supreme Court on border issue forcefully and the State Government will do it,” asserted Fadnavis.
“Talks with Shiv Sena on participation in Government are going on at Central level and the Central leadership will decide on the number of Ministries to be given to Shiv Sena and their portfolios. A positive decision will be taken soon,” hoped the Chief Minister. He said that according to Nagpur Pact, the Winter Session in Nagpur must run for six weeks but it was never happening. But now onwards, till the subjects on the scheduled agenda are not taken up, the session will go on, Fadnavis said.
… But I have not heard it:
Commenting on the statement of Revenue Minister and senior BJP leader Eknathrao Khadse that the Chief Minister should be from Bahujan community, Fadnavis said “Even if Khadse would have made the statement, I have not heard it. Khadse is a senior party leader. He is not unhappy at all. Khadse himself proposed my name (for Chief Ministership). Therefore, there is no reason he is unhappy with me,” quipped Fadnavis.