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Monthly Archives: May 2008

Raj Thackeray is channeling the frustrations of the youth in Maharashtra against the ‘Bhaiyyas’. Their crime? That they celebrate their local festivals with great fervor and a ‘Thackeray-perceived’ obscenity on the Mumbai beaches; that they are taking up the jobs available from the Marathi youth.

It is important to point out that the Marathi youth for him lives only in the cities. And since this is where the media resides, we see only that part of the story. I wonder (mostly with fair amount of disgust) how easily the real issues get neglected. To ask the politicians to remember them would be a tad bit too much I guess, but as I write this I realize that that just might be the real issue in India.

How can we not notice that entire Maharashtra is facing an acute electricity shortage?*  I barely see that mentioned anywhere.

I am a native of Amravati in the Vidharbha region of Maharashtra where all the districts have been facing load-shedding for three hours and more for over a year now. The situation is worse in the rural areas where there is no electricity for 12 hours. As a result, agriculture and industry are both suffering. Not to mention the daily inconvenience to the citizens. Articles like this and this outline the government’s fault better than me.

Maharashtra Navnirmaan Sena should be focusing on these issues instead. If it actually wants to be the party it aims for – a party of Maharashtrians who understands it the best – then it should take a good look at what defines us.

Maharashtrians have always been farmers first. We are a kind of people, who I believe take tremendous amount of pride in the amount of land we own and treasure in being a farmer. The aphorism¬† ‘Uttam Sheti, Madhyam Vyapar, Kanishth Naukri’ (Agriculture is the best occupation, business comes next, employment is the most inferior) is still the motto in our villages. We were never overzealous to leave our hometowns and travel abroad for employment, as compared to other states like Rajasthan, Kerala etc. Our black fertile soil provides plenty and it is not asking for a lot but for irrigation and a free market. Is that a lot to ask even after paying taxes?

If there is a huge exodus of people moving in Mumbai, it is because there are jobs available for them. Maharashtrians are not getting them, plainly because they don’t want to take up jobs as construction workers or factory men and such. If they don’t want it , then what’s this hullabaloo about?

Nashik, Aurangabad all are industrial areas with heavy labor requirement and they will be practically strangled if they are forced to have reservations for Marathi youth, which in turn will force them to move out of the state, which I am sure Maharashtrians don’t want.

I am sure that as long as they don’t answer the real issues, non of the Thackeray’s can come to power. God forbid if they do, it will be a total blackout this time, not just a power cut.