Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari’s comments that “Mumbai will have no money” if the Gujaratis and Rajasthanis were to leave triggered a massive controversy on Saturday.
Speaking during an event on Friday evening, Koshyari said, ”I tell people here that if Gujaratis and Rajasthanis are removed from Maharashtra, especially from Mumbai and Thane, you will be left with no money and Mumbai will not be a financial capital,” he said.
#WATCH | If Gujaratis and Rajasthanis are removed from Maharashtra, especially Mumbai and Thane, no money would be left here. Mumbai would not be able to remain the financial capital of the country: Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari pic.twitter.com/l3SlOFMc0v
— ANI (@ANI) July 30, 2022
Meanwhile, from Eknath Shinde to Uddhav Thackeray, leaders across party lines condemned Koshyari’s comments.
Let us take a look at who said what:
Chief Minister Eknath Shinde said he disagreed with Koshyari’s remarks. Talking to reporters, Shinde said, “We don’t agree with Koshyari’s remarks. It’s his personal view. He has now issued a clarification. He occupies a constitutional post and should take care that his actions do not insult others. “The Marathi community’s hard work has contributed to the development and progress of Mumbai….No one can insult Mumbai and Marathi people,” he added.
Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said Marathi-speaking people played a major role in the development and growth of Maharashtra. “Even in the industrial sector, Marathi-speaking people have made global strides. We don’t agree with the governor’s remarks,” he added.
State NCP president Jayant Patil said it was unfortunate that the governor has “scant respect for the Marathi-speaking working class due to whose hard work Mumbai progressed and developed.” Koshyari doubted Marathi people’s capability to create wealth and this was an insult to Maharashtra, he said.
State Congress chief Nana Patole said Koshyari’s remarks were outrageous and he had always “insulted Maharashtra through his actions and words.” “The Centre should seek Koshyari’s resignation and send him to Gujarat or Rajasthan,” he said.
Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Ajit Pawar said the governor shouldn’t create unnecessary controversies. Marathi-speaking people were instrumental in creating the state of Maharashtra with Mumbai as its capital and nation-building was not possible without Maharashtra, the NCP leader said.
Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut tweeted that the governor wanted to imply that Marathi people and Maharashtra were “beggars.”
Terming it “Koshyari’s hoshyari”, the MNS President asked the Governor not to keep blabbering if he doesn’t know the state’s history as his comments have pained the people here. “The Marathi people and others have given their lands and labour, and ensured a conducive environment that attracts people from all over to do business here. Do they get these anywhere else? Ahead of the elections, don’t try to spoil the atmosphere or corner the Marathis, that’s my request,” he said.
The Shiv Sena president demanded an apology from Koshyari and said time has come to decide whether he should be sent back home or to jail. Thackeray also accused the governor of “dividing Hindus living peacefully” in Mumbai and Thane.
Meanwhile, as his remarks kicked up a row, the governor said his comments were misconstrued and added that he had “no intention of belittling the hard work of Marathi-speaking people”.
There was no question of belittling the contribution of Marathi-speaking people and “lauding one community does not mean insulting another,” he said.
(With PTI inputs)