Last Updated: June 07, 2023, 23:01 IST
Maharashtra Congress president Nana Patole on Wednesday accused the ruling BJP of inciting riots in the state by fanning people’s religious sentiments and sought the resignation of Home Minister Devendra Fadnavis, alleging that he has failed to maintain the law and order situation.
Talking to reporters here, Patole said an “experienced and competent” person should be given the responsibility of the home department. The Congress leader also asked how those who glorify Mughal emperor Aurangzeb have become active ever since deputy chief minister Fadnavis became the home minister. Patole was targeting the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Fadnavis against the backdrop of some youths displaying photos of Aurangzeb in a procession in Ahmednagar and tension in Kolhapur city on Wednesday over the alleged use of Tipu Sultan’s image along with an objectionable audio message as social media “status” by some locals.
He also referred to the alleged rape and murder of an 18-year-old college student, who was found dead in her hostel room in Mumbai.
“Creating communal tension is part of the BJP’s cunning plan to further their political interests. It is shameful that women and girls are not safe in Mumbai,” he alleged. Patole appealed to people to maintain peace and not believe in rumours.
“The Eknath Shinde-Devendra Fadnavis government, which came to power in the state through a conspiracy, has completely failed to maintain law and order. The morale of criminals has gone up and the police are failing to take action against them,” he said.
“How did those who glorify Aurangzeb become active only now? Riots are taking place in the state every day. What are the chief minister and home minister doing? In Aurangabad, Ahmednagar, Shevgaon, Amravati, and Nashik, there were attempts to create riots in the state by inciting religious issues last month, but the attempts failed as people took a stand of reconciliation. Now again fanatical forces are trying to spoil the atmosphere by pushing the issue of Aurangzeb in Ahmednagar and Kolhapur districts. If there was a competent police department, criminals would not have become so bold. It is a cunning plan of the BJP to incite riots by fanning the religious issues in the state. Is Fadnavis unconsciously ignoring such incidents?” Patole asked.
The home department’s job is to maintain law and order in the state, but what are the home minister and the police machinery doing? This is a question for the people of the state, he said. According to him, he led a delegation of the Congress party, which included former chief minister Prithviraj Chavan, on May 19, and met the state Director General of Police (DGP) and demanded that strict steps be taken to maintain law and order and for women’s safety. But no action is being taken on this front. It is very unfortunate that the government is only busy with transfers of police officers. Along with the home ministry, Fadnavis is in charge of six departments such as Finance, Energy, Housing, Protocol and he is also the guardian minister of six districts. So he is not able to give proper justice to the home department, he said.
“Fadnavis no longer has control over the home ministry and the police. The home portfolio should be taken away from him immediately and the state should have an experienced, competent, and full-time home minister,” he said. Along with this, in a safe city like Mumbai, it has come to light that a student was tortured and killed in a hostel. The situation in the state is such that there is no longer rule of law in the state, but it is ruled by criminals and social miscreants, Patole alleged.
“A college girl has been found murdered in a hostel in Mumbai’s Churchgate, where she was apparently sexually assaulted. It is a matter of shame for Maharashtra that a female student is raped and killed in broad daylight in a hostel located a stone’s throw away from Malabar Hill, the residence of the chief minister. But the people sitting in power do not feel anything about it. It is a very unfortunate thing, he said. Girls are not safe in cities like Mumbai. Thousands of women and girls are going missing from the state and the government is not doing anything about it, he alleged.
(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – PTI)