NCP on Thursday accused Union minister Nitin Gadkari of infringing on the rights of Maharashtra government on the Nagpur Metro issue. "The issue concerns the state government and the Union Urban Development Department. Gadkari has no connection with that department but is infringing on the state government's rights," NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik said here.
"Even PM Narendra Modi is succumbing to pressure by Gadkari on the Nagpur Metro issue and is bringing party politics into the government function (bhumi pujan of metro at Nagpur today)," Malik said, adding that in such a situation the decision of chief minister Prithviraj Chavan to skip the event is justified. Modi laid foundation of Nagpur Metro in senior BJP leader and Union Transport and Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari's constituency, a day after the Union Cabinet cleared a Rs 8,860 crore metro project for the city, the second capital of Maharashtra after Mumbai.
Chavan has boycotted the function after he was booed at last Saturday's function in Solapur in the presence of Modi, who had then come to inaugurate a national highway project. Malik alleged that BJP has begun the manoeuvre to carve out a separate state of Vidarbha "and that's the reason why that party's leaders are rushing through projects like the Metro". Meanwhile, state NCP chief Sunil Tatkare described as "unfortunate" the Congress leader Digvijay Singh's reported suggestion that the Sharad Pawar-led party should merge with Congress. "Why does he make such a suggestion on the eve of elections," Tatkare said.