MUMBAI: The Eknath Shinde government may be dragging its feet on forming the cabinet but it’s moving speedily to facilitate projects linked to Sena rebels who are backing it.
Last week, the state approved a Rs 19-crore increase in the project cost of a spinning mill in Kolhapur controlled by Sena rebel Prakash Abitkar, in keeping with policy. It has also approved the transfer of 20 acres of land from the tourism department for the construction of a Bhim Park and Shivaji statue in the constituency of Sena rebel Abdul Sattar.
The Sharad Cooperative spinning mill in Kolhapur’s Kagal taluka was registered in 1994 and granted government support. Last year, its approved project cost was Rs 61.7 crore.
Govt speeds up Shivaji statue on Sattar’s turf
The Eknath Shinde government is moving fast on construction of a Bhim Park and Shivaji statue in Sena rebel Abdul Sattar’s constituency besides other projects linked to Sena rebel MLAs. In December 2021, MVA government had agreed to the construction of Bhim Park dedicated to Babasaheb Ambedkar near the Ajanta Caves in Fardapur. This falls within the constituency of Sena rebel Abdul Sattar. For the Bhim Park, the MVA government had given in-principle approval to provide 10 acres of land from the tourism department and a fund of Rs 1 crore for initial project planning.
Separately, the construction of a Shivaji statue was also being planned in Fardapur. After the Shinde government took over, it approved the transfer of 20 acres of land from the tourism department for the two projects, sources said. Ten acres will be allotted to the rural development department for the Shivaji statue and the remaining 10 acres to the social welfare department for the Bhim Park. Sattar was not available for comment.
It also approved increase in the project cost of Sharad Cooperative spinning mill in Kolhapur controlled by Sena rebel Prakash Abitkar. The policy approved by the MVA government in June 2021, allowed the project cost of cooperative spinning mills receiving government support to be raised to Rs 80.9 crore, if they were still incomplete. The mill, which is controlled by Abitkar, had applied for hiked cost and received in-principle approval. The final approval was granted by the Shinde government in a issued on July 22. “The enhanced project cost is part of government policy. The application had been made during the previous regime and the approval has come now. Other spinning mills will be granted the same,” Abitkar told ToI.