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Govt needs transparency in toll booth function: Raj Thackeray

Wednesday, 11 June 2014 - 7:19am IST | Agency: dna

On his visit to Nashik, Raj Thackeray spoke eloquently on various subjects like LBT, unauthorised buildings and the violation of policy in toll booths

Dissatisfied with the state government's decision to shut down 44 toll booths across the state, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray said, "This move is not enough. The toll issue needs proper policy and transparency."

Raj Thackeray is on a Nashik visit. He interacted with the media at Government Rest House. Speaking on the toll issue he said, "The government had earlier announced that 65 toll booths will be closed now they are saying 44. Are these 44 among the 65 announced earlier remains to be seen. I have asked for details, however, the toll issue needs a proper policy. It also lacks much needed transparency as it is a big cash business". 

Thackeray added, "The central government directive states that there should be a minimum of 80 km distance between two toll booths. The state government has reduced this minimum distance to 25-30 kms by a Government Resolution. However, between Thane and Pune there are two toll booths within 2 km distance at Mulund and Airoli. Where is the policy in all this. The toll business is mishandled".

On the Campa Cola building issue, Raj Thackeray clarified that his stand is not only for Campa Cola building but all such unauthorised building across the state. He said, "If the occupants of the building are to be punished why should the builders or the officials whether they are local authorities, officials, ward officers, corporators, or MLAs, who ever in authority is concerned, go scot free. In case of Adarsh building issue all those officials in authority who had held flats in that building have resumed their duties or have come back to position, then why should the common man in a building like Campa Cola alone face the brunt?"

"Those responsible for allowing an unauthorised building stand for so many years need to be brought to book and it should be a deterrent for such actions or else we may see many such buildings. We may have to dig out old files and find who were responsible but that needs to be done. Rules and laws should be equal for all", he said.

Peaking about his visit to Nashik, Thackeray said, "I see a definite communication gap between the elected corporators, office bearers and the citizens of Nashik. They have failed to communicate what has been done for the city in the last two years by the MNS-ruled corporation. It is like as if a silent movie is being run in Nashik".

Regarding the funds for the Kumbhmela he said, "The state and the central government must support the funds for the Kumbhmela. The Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC) does not have such large amount of funds to host an event like the Kumbhmela which is not only for Nashik but is for people all over the country. If NMC is to pay for everything, it would mean that the people of Nashik who pay the taxes will be burdened, why should they bear such a huge burden. The government must help".

On the LBT issue, Thackeray said that LBT came in place of octroi. Now there is opposition for LBT. As a party we maintain that taxes cannot be wished out. They will have to be paid. A proper system needs to be developed to pay the taxes which is not inconvenient to the business and trading community. One window or one tax system needs to be worked out.

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