Despite Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis apologising to the barber community for an analogy he made about their profession, barbers in the state have decided to intensify their protests against him.
A meeting of the Maharashtra Nabhik Mahamandal, the apex body of barbers in the state, held in Buldhana district decided to stage a rasta roko protest on December 2 against the remarks made by Fadnavis.
On December 13, around 11,000 people will tonsure their heads and present the hair to Fadnavis, a Mahamandal member said.
“From tomorrow, wherever Fadnavis goes, we will show him black flags,” he said.
Fadnavis, while speaking at a programme near Pune on November 9, had said that during the previous Congress-NCP government, various irrigation schemes were left incomplete as money was not being provided for them.
To highlight his point, he had said, “In the garb of schemes, the houses and vaults of contractors were being filled (with money). Just like a barber shaves half beard of one man and half portion of hair of another to prevent customers from leaving when there is a long waiting (queue). Similarly, these people (previous government) gave a little cream to everybody that left the works incomplete.”
“Our government is doing the work of completing these pending schemes now. In another two years, we shall complete all of them and farmers will benefit,” he had said.
Following Fadnavis comments, the barber community held protests at some places, including Osmanabad district, and put up posters showing him with half beard and half-tonsured head.
Fadnavis later wrote a letter to the association of barbers and apologised for his comments.
“I only wanted to stress how the previous government left projects incomplete and in doing so, I unintentionally gave an example. I did not mean to hurt the sentiments of anybody in doing so,” Fadnavis had said.