Nagpur is now known as the "crime city" of Maharashtra and the state had never faced such ignominy before, NCP president Sharad Pawar said on Thursday as he targeted Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on the law and order situation ahead of the October 21 assembly polls.
Mr Fadnavis, who also holds the home portfolio, hails from Nagpur and is contesting assembly polls from one of the seats in the city, which is the second capital of Maharashtra.
Addressing a poll rally at Hinganghat in Wardha district, Mr Pawar also attacked the BJP-led governments at the Centre and in Maharashtra over agrarian crisis and job losses.
"It is the government's responsibility to ensure law and order, give justice to the common people. Nagpur is second capital of Maharashtra. Nagpur is now known as crime city of the state in the country," Mr Pawar said.
"The chief minister comes from Nagpur. This state, Nagpur or Vidarbha never faced such ignominy this way," the former Union minister added.
Mr Pawar alleged the state's debt has increased to more than Rs 4 lakh crore under the Fadnavis government's watch and added it was better that less was said about how much of the amount was spent on development since 2014.
The former Union agriculture minister claimed the BJP-Shiv Sena government has extended farm loan waiver benefit only to 30 per cent of the farmers in the state.
Mr Pawar further alleged the Fadnavis administration was not bothered about job losses across factories in the state.
Citing the example of shutting down of debt-laden Jet Airways, Mr Pawar maintained had the government been "alert", it could have found some way to ensure 20,000 employees of the private carrier did not lose their jobs.
The Maratha strongman reiterated he was named in a case by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the alleged Maharashtra State Cooperative Bank scam even though he was not a member of the lender.
The NCP chief said he had decided to approach the ED on his own after the case was filed against him late last month.
"Given the election was around the corner then, I would be required to campaign outside Mumbai. They may have had said I was absconding. Hence, I had decided to approach the ED," said the former chief minister.
"When I said I would come, they were scared. I got call from Delhi, saying I should not go. Police officials also requested with folded hands that I should not go," said Mr Pawar, who later dropped his much-publicised plan to visit the ED office in south Mumbai, citing the law and order situation.
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