Uddhav seeks special assembly session to discuss drought

With most parts of Marathwada grappling with severe drought, Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray asked the government to hold a day-long special assembly session to discuss the situation. He blamed the government for failing to address long-pending issues.

Addressing the first rally at Jalna of his state-wide tour which began Sunday, Uddhav visited parts of district that are getting water through tankers. He asked for immediate measures to be taken by the government.

He claimed that as Maharashtra cabinet was dominated by the leaders from western Maharashtra, the needs of Marathwada region were being sidelined.

"If this region has to get justice, a special one-day session of the assembly should be called to address the issues related to drought in Marathwada region," said Uddhav.

He added though the government had promised zero load shedding by 2012, this was yet to be achieved. Uddhav demanded that the power bills of farmers in drought affected areas should be waived and school and college examinations in these talukas and districts be conducted in advance.

Uddhav's cousin and MNS chief Raj Thackeray is expected to start a similar state wide tour from next week.

Leader of opposition in the legislative council Vinod Tawde has already embarked about tour of drought regions, while Beed MP and BJP deputy leader Gopinath Munde has been taking stock of the drought situation. NCP chief Sharad Pawar has asked ministers and party leaders to visit the 123 talukas that have been declared drought-hit and submit reports. They have been asked to monitor the situation and take necessary steps.

Muzaffar Hussain nominated

Former MLC and AICC member Muzaffar Hussain has been nominated the candidate of Congress for the MLC elections. Last date of filing nomination is Monday.

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