Sena -Samajwadi lock horns over naming coastal road

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Samajwadi Party wants the project to be named after A.P.J Abdul Kalam while Sena proposes Bal Thackeray’s name.

Costal-RoadEven though the work on the coastal road project is yet to begin put political parties have already started proposing names of renowned leaders for the project. Samajwadi Party said it will ask Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to name the 35-km long coastal road that will connect the island city with Kandivali in North Mumbai, after former President late APJ Abdul Kalam. Earlier Shiv Sena had proposed late Bal Thackeray’s name for the coastal road. The coastal road may take several years to be completed but Samajwadi Party and Shiv Sena are already involved in a tussle over the naming of the project. Both the parties are trying to derive political mileage out of this issue. The coastal road is already being opposed by environmentalists and activists as it will cause harm to the environment. The fishermen community fear that the coastal road will threaten the breeding grounds for fish, and impact aquatic life.

Abu-Asim-AzmiSP MLA Abu Azmi said that he will write to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and also Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, with a request to name the ambitious project after Kalam.

“Kalam was a great person and naming the coastal road after him would be a befitting tribute,” Azmi said.

Azmi’s demand came three weeks after a Shiv Sena MLA wrote to the chief minister demanding that the road be named after late Sena supremo Bal Thackeray.

Sunil“Balasaheb Thackeray had a stature that has got Maharashtra not only national but international repute. Thus, I have demanded that this coastal road, which will be a one of kind project, be named after Balasaheb,” Sena MLA Sunil Prabhu had said.

Prabhu, in his letter, said that by naming the coastal road after Thackeray, people coming to Mumbai from across the world would become aware of his contribution to the city.

Recently, the coastal road project had become a fresh topic for the BJP and Shiv Sena to squabble upon, as both parties claimed credit for it.

While the Sena said that the project was envisaged by it, the BJP maintained that it is the Central government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi that has granted crucial approvals.

The BMC extended the deadline for receiving suggestions and objections from residents on the ambitious coastal road project. The civic body will now receive the ideas and suggestions till August 27, 2015. The earlier date for submitting suggestions was July 27.

On the other hand, the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly paid rich tributes to former President APJ Abdul Kalam. Leader of Opposition Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, PWP leader Ganpatrao Deshmukh, NCP leader Ajit Pawar, Shiv Sena’s Eknath Shinde were prominent among those who spoke on the occasion.

Education Minister Vinod Tawde said the state government will celebrate Kalam’s birth anniversary on October 15 as “Vaachan (reading) Prerna Diwas” in schools.

The state government had not declared any holiday for schools and colleges on Tuesday, following the death of ex-President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam. The government has declared a national mourning period of 7 days, Union Home Secretary LC Goyal had earlier said.