Mumbai Diary

In an explanation later, Ajit Pawar said that the worsening Covid-19 situation and rising Omicron cases had prompted the alliance leaders to ask him not to participate in the session.

Published: 06th January 2022 03:59 AM  |   Last Updated: 06th January 2022 08:29 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

Ajit Pawar goes back on CM participation promise
Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar is a man of his word. Ahead of the recently concluded winter session of the state assembly, Pawar had told media persons that Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray would surely attend the session. When reporters persistently asked if he was sure about it, Pawar, who is known for his conclusiveness, said that he was ready to give it in writing that Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray would attend the winter session, which in reality did not happen. In an explanation later, Ajit Pawar said that the worsening Covid-19 situation and rising Omicron cases had prompted the alliance leaders to ask him not to participate in the session.

No end to tussle between mayor, BMC commissioner
The mayor of Mumbai has yet again condemned the city municipal commissioner’s failure in laying bare major decisions taken at the corporation. As per the BMC Act, municipal commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal holds more power than Mayor Kishori Pednekar. Earlier too, the corporation had witnessed a tussle between the municipal commissioner and the mayor, but the former always had the last laugh.  This time as well, the mayor expressed displeasure against the corporation that while taking any big decision she as the mayor was not taken into confidence. She complained that many big decisions are being taken without her knowledge. However, her woes are likely to fall in a deaf ear as more power lies with the municipal commissioner.

More politicians down with Covid this time
An alarming reality with the Covid third wave is that many politicians and elected representatives in Maharashtra – who evaded the danger of contracting the virus in the first and second waves – have been getting infected. NCP MLA Rohit Pawar, Supriya Sule, Revenue Minister Balasaheb Thorat and others, who remained uninfected in first and second waves, are now Covid-infected and undergoing care. Worryingly, in Maharashtra, more than 13 ministers and 50 MLAs, who were infected after the winter session, had been fully vaccinated and tested Covid negative as part of tests conducted prior to the assembly opened.

Sharad Pawar reveals 2019 NCP-BJP tie-up plan
NCP chief Sharad Pawar recently stated that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had given offer for a tie-up with the BJP and form government in Maharashtra in 2019. Now, political spectators are clueless over why Sharad Pawar made such a big statement at a time when the tri-party Maha Vikas Aghadi has successfully completed two years in power in the state. Whether it is a pressure tactic to control the allies or does Pawar have any such plan for the future is to be reserved for the time to come. Earlier, NCP and BJP had announced alliances in 2014 and in 2017. But these plans soon fizzled out over many reasons.

Sudhir Suryawanshi 
Our correspondent in Maharashtra

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