Jalna (Maha): Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray today appealed to the farmers hit by drought not to commit suicide, saying his party firmly stands behind them.
“The farmers should not commit suicide as our party stands behind them,” he said after disbursing financial aid to drought hit farmers here.
Uddhav said his party would bear expenses of farmer’s daughters who are to be married in drought-affected Marathwada region and has floated ‘Kanyadan’ scheme named after its founder Bal Thackeray.
Referring to the suicide committed by a girl in Latur for not having Rs 260 for a bus pass, Uddhav said he was “disappointed” with the incident.
“I had called the Transport minister Diwakar Raote (a Sena leader) and asked him to do something for students. Following which he has introduced the scheme to waive off bus fare to students in drought affected areas,” he informed.
Uddhav said he had personally raised money by selling his photos and it helped drought-affected farmers.
“We will also take care of education of children of the drought-hit farmers,” Thackeray, who is on a visit of the drought-hit areas of Marathwada, had said in Parbhani district.
Uddhav also praised Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis for raising Rs 256 crore from charity for mitigating farmers.
Expressing hope that the state government, in which his party is in power with BJP, would provide more succour to farmers, he demanded that the government should wave tuition fees of students in drought-affected areas.
“Mere waving exam fees is not enough. Tuition fees should be waived off”, he said.
In a veiled attack on Congress-NCP leaders, he said education, sugar and co-operative barons had not done anything for the students from drought-hit areas.
Uddhav said they had taken benefits from government and named their institutions after their relatives and are doing nothing for the poor students.
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Uddhav asked why they are not helping students of drought hit farmers and threatened that if they don’t listen, the Sena would teach them lesson their own style.
Shiv Sena leaders distributed Rs one crore to the farmers at the programme here.
Uddhav also lauded MLA Arjun Khotkar for construction of (small) dams here.
The Sena leader is visiting farmers affected by crop loss due to drought, unseasonal rains and hailstorm in Parbhani, Jalna and Nanded districts.