Shiv Sena sees no ‘Net’ value in Anti-Suicide step at Maharashtra Secretariat

MUMBAI: The Shiv Sena today took a jibe at the Maharashtra government over fixing a safety net at the state secretariat to prevent suicides, saying it was akin to treating legs for an ailment in the stomach.

It claimed that over 4,000 people have committed suicide in the last three years either at their homes or farms in the state, and only a handful have resorted to the extreme step at the secretariat.

The government is expected to take measures to resolve the woes of farmers and other people to prevent such incidents, the Sena said while seeking to know if installing the safety net in the state administrative premises was the only solution.

“Instead of fixing the nylon nets, the government should make concrete provisions that people do not need to commit suicide…the ailment is in the stomach, however, the legs are being plastered,” quipped the Sena in an editorial in party’s mouthpiece ‘Saamana’.

The PWD department recently installed the safety net across the first floor of the seven-storey building of the state secretariat, also referred as the Mantralaya, to prevent suicides after two persons tried to jump off its corridors.

The Sena said the government is expected to do something concrete to stop further suicides.

“It was expected to solve problems of farmers, of the working class so that they would not even have to climb the stairs of Mantralaya. However, all the government could do was fix a net to desist people from jumping,” said the BJP’s ally at the Centre and in Maharashtra.

The government has become unstable as the state secretariat has become a “suicide point”, it claimed, adding that every visitor to the place is being seen with suspicion as if he/she is entering to commit suicide.

“The suicides are a blot on the state. Is fixing the nylon net a solution? If one would have observed, (farmer) Dharma Patil drank poison (to commit suicide) and did not jump off. It would be clear that the nylon net is very weak,” the Sena said.

Mr Patil (84), hailing from Dhule district, had consumed a poisonous substance in the Mantralaya on January 22 demanding better compensation for his acquired land. He died in a hospital here on January 28.