Nagpur: Devendra Fadnavis’ resignation as the state’s chief minister has evoked strong reactions from prominent citizens as they mulled over what’s in store for the infrastructure projects, the leader’s political future and what they feel is up next for the city.
Shivkumar Rao, president Vidarbha Economic Development Council, said, “My take is that there could be initial hiccups for projects but they won’t stop. In these last five years, politicians have understood that development is the key and it cannot be ignored. Media too has become very strong and stalled projects will attract attention.”
At a personal level, he felt that Fadnavis took a big political risk by going with Ajit Pawar. “Apart from that, the Vidarbha state issue is now definitely in the cold storage as it’s not on BJP’s agenda at all,” said Rao.
Suresh Rathi, president of Vidarbha Industries Association, said “We want a stable government regardless of who forms it. Industries are looking for strong policies that will be sustainable. Long term sustainability of policies is the need of the hour. As far as local projects like metro are concerned, I feel Nitin Gadkari will ensure a smooth continuation.”
Mohabbat Singh Tuli, a well known businessman, said, “If the new government wants to keep the goodwill going then these projects must not be stopped. Already, the government has invested a lot of money. So, stopping projects will only invite public ire.’ He added that the Vidarbha state issue would neither become an issue nor will it happen because it is not on BJP’s agenda.
Dr Sushrut Babhulkar, a renowned medical practitioner, said, “I don’t think projects that have already taken off will get held up as funds have already been allocated. I do hope that all parties will work towards the development of Vidarbha and not show any prejudice for previously started projects.”
Anuj Badjate, who runs a diversified business group, said “The pace of work in infrastructure projects might get hampered if cash flow from budget allocation slows down. I do feel that Gadkari will ensure that projects where the centre too has a stake will continue.”
Dr. Sanjay Deshpande, a well known medical practitioner, said “I think Fadnavis’ loss is a loss for Nagpur and Vidarbha. The Fadnavis and Gadkari duo had worked hard to develop the city and that pace will get hampered. Fortunately, Fadnavis got saved and did not form the government with NCP as it would have anyway run into trouble.”
Tejinder Singh Renu, secretary of Vidarbha Taxpayers Association, said, “In projects that have both the state and centre as stakeholders, coordination is very crucial. With Fadnavis gone, the centre-state coordination will take a hit.”
He added that a separate Vidarbha state should be on the agenda. “BJP must act on it as it’s high time. What happened with Fadnavis on Tuesday must be taken as a lesson as he was betrayed by someone he trusted politically,” said Renu.
Dinesh Naidu, a social activist and businessman, said, “Fadnavis lost his face politically the moment he aligned with NCP’s Ajit Pawar. Now, as a citizen, I hope that projects are not delayed under the new government. Gadkari now has to bear the entire workload for Vidarbha because he is the only face from the region now.”
Dr Gopal Bhutada, a homeopath, said, “Other political parties just did not want a person from Vidarbha to become CM and now this will affect projects in the city, including his dream project, the Super Expressway. No loss of face for Fadnavis as he surpassed everyone’s expectations in the last five years. I think he must have learnt a lesson from this episode.”
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