Congress boycotts tea party, says Maha CM’s absence an ‘insult’

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CONGRESS-PRESS-CONFERENCE-AT-NAGPUR-(2)Opposition Congress on Sunday boycotted the customary tea party held on the eve of the Winter Session of the Maharashtra Legislature and said Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis’ absence from the event is an “insult of democracy”.

“Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis just invited us for the tea party as a formality. But he was not able to attend it. He had conveyed this to us in a letter. But this is a serious matter and it is for the first time in the history of Maharashtra that a CM is absent for tea party. Therefore, Congress party has decided to boycott it,” MPCC chief Manikrao Thakre said.

Typically, the chief minister hosts the tea party for opposition leaders on the eve of the Legislature session.

However, Fadnavis skipped the event as he is in New Delhi to attend a conference of Chief Ministers called by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“Chief Minister’s behaviour is an insult of the democracy. This is a Gujarat pattern where so many times similar incidents have taken place. Absence of CM from the tea party shows that they are not serious about government procedures,” Thakre said.

He said Congress party has planned a protest march on the first day of Winter Session of the Legislature tomorrow over various issues in the state, including drought.

“Maharashtra is facing serious drought. Farmers are in very critical condition. They need financial need at the earliest,” he said.

“In the last three years, the Congress-led government gave Rs. 10,000 crore package for farmers. The Maharashtra Government should immediately announce financial package for draught victims and farmers,” the Congress leader said.

This session is going to be without a Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Assembly as Shiv Sena’s Eknath Shinde, who had been holding the post until now, has been made a cabinet minister in the BJP government.

The Congress has staked its claim for the post of the Leader of Opposition in the state assembly.

“There is no opposition leader in the Assembly. NCP might be with ruling party. That party is not aggressive about the BJP government. The NCP leaders have not made their stand clear on the issue,” Thakre said.