Nagpur: “I would rather be the Chief Minister of Vidarbha; I have no interest in being CM of Maharashtra, he had declared. He toured the whole state as state BJP President and wherever he went in Vidarbha he proclaimed that getting a separate Vidarbha was his main agenda, now when his party is in power both at Delhi and Mumbai why is it not happening? We are going to his house in Nagpur to ask him this.” Says Wamanrao Chatap, one of the main faces behind the Vidarbha Rajya Andolan Samiti, speaking to NT just now.
Others joining in this ‘visit and sit down Dharna’ in front of Fadnavis’ private residence in Dharampeth are going to be renowned Economist and former HOD of Economics and Business Management Departments of University of Nagpur Dr. Shrinivas Khandewale,Advocate Nanda Parate, Prabirkumar Chakravorty, former D.G. Maharashtra, Arvind Deshmukh,Arun Kedar, Anil Tidke, Vishnu Ashtikar, Dharmaraj Rewatkar, Dilip Narwadiya,President of Koshish Foundation and Secretary of Shri Sai Shikshan Sanstha (SSSS), Advocate Ramesh Gajwe and Dhananjay Dharmik.
“Among the things Devendra had demanded as leader of opposition were raised MSP for Vidarbha crops like Cotton, Soyabean and Paddy – Cotton: Rs. 6000 per quintal, Soyabean Rs. 5000 per quintal and Paddy Rs. 3000 per quintal.
He had also headed agitations demanding that all loans against farmers be written off, their electricity bills waived off ( since they never get power regularly) and if these assurances could not be given, there was no alternative to separate Vidarbha” he had said, say the Andolan Samiti leaders.
Now he has been chief Minister of Maharashtra for over an year, what has happened to all his promises, demands and utterances? Ask pro Vidarbha people.
“He made a promise, when is he going to fulfill it?” Asks Prabir Chakravorty.
“We have made a lot of preparations for today’s agitation, many people will join, but it will be peaceful” he adds.
“I am with them a 100%” says Advocate Mukesh Samarth, President of Vidarbha Connect “but will not be able to join physically since I am caught up in the High Court the whole day”.
Today’s agitation is also being supported , Vidarbha Olympics Association Secretary Shrikant Warankar, who bemoans the lack of sports facilities for Vidarbha and former Minister Vinod Gudhade Patil, who is spearheading agitation against MIHAN land acquisition of Shivangaon farmers.
Ram Nevle, the main ‘inviter’ of the agitation informs that people will gather at 212 Giripeth, office of the Vidarbha State Andolan Samiti and then move from Law College square to the CM’s residence in Dharampeth.
Will Fadnavis be there to meet them, since he is normally in the city on weekends?
Unlikely, admit many privately ” his whereabouts are being kept top secret by his office people.”
… Sunita Mudaliar ( Associate Editor )