A private resolution presented by a BJP MP from Maharashtra, which never got discussed or debated in the ongoing parliament session, has succeeded in adjourning the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly's monsoon session.
The only purpose served by the resolution, which sought to hive off Vidarbha from Maharashtra into a separate state, was of diverting the criticism from corruption allegations against 17 BJP-Shiv Sena ministers.
The resolution was presented by BJP's Vidharbha MP Nana Patole in Parliament. Citing it, the Congress, the NCP and the Shiv Sena parties created a huge ruckus in both the Houses, the Assembly and the Council seeing adjournment till Monday.
Dhananjay Munde, leader of opposition in the legislative council, raised this issue, drawing huge sloganeering from both pro-Vidarbha and pro-Maharashtra members in the house. Shiv Sena, which has been opposing the idea of separate Vidarbha state for decades, saw it as an opportunity to embarrass the BJP.
Shiv Sena MLA Sunil Prabhu said, “We fought for a United Maharashtra and got it after the sacrifice of 105 martyrs. We will once again do everything and anything to keep Maharashtra united.”
Ranjit Patil, state minister for urban development, had barely announced a controversial decision of legalising all illegal constructions in the state before 2015, when Leader of Opposition Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil and former deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar raised the issue of the Vidarbha resolution in the Assembly.
They demanded an official statement and explanation from Chief Minister Devendra Fadanvis. Minister for Higher Education Vinod Tawde pointed out: “We cannot discuss the bills and resolutions in Parliament and hence the House should not be adjourned.” But the Congress-NCP leaders, in order to isolate ruling BJP, kept aggressively shouting along with Shiv Sena MLAs, for an official explanation about government's position about separate Vidarbha.
The monsoon session had begun with Congress party putting up an exhibition of documentary evidences of the allegations of corruption against 17 ministers. Both the Congress and the NCP had taken an aggressive stand, in both the Houses, for a judicial probe into all the allegations of corruption and the government. For the first time, they were seen on the back-foot.
The monsoon session is to conclude on August 5 and the opposition had an opportunity to get the judicial probe ordered. This was especially important after the resignation of Eknath Khadse, the second most powerful BJP minister after the allegations of corruption on him. Now, the emotional issue of separate Vidarbha will dominate the last five days of the session.