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Sunday, June 11, 2023

Agenda-driven Woke activists back after Maha govt lifts Aarey metro shed stay

The Maharashtra government has lifted the stay on the Aarey metro shed construction. Deputy Chief Minister (DCM) Devendra Fadnavis issued orders to the urban development department to start the process for the same.

A report by The Indian Express says:

CM Eknath Shinde has removed the stay on construction of a car shed in Mumbai’s Aarey Milk Colony for Metro-3, said additional chief secretary and Urban Development Department head Bhushan Gagrani on Thursday.

The government has also told the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation to mobilize contractors so that work can resume on the site. On Wednesday, the Urban Development Department and MMRC had a discussion on the matter, said, officials.

Metro-3 will connect Navy Nagar and Seepz. The previous Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government had dropped the Aarey Colony site for a car shed, opting for a 102-plot of land in Kanjurmarg…

…Fadnavis added, “This Aarey plot was selected by the government led by Prithviraj Chavan (Congress-NCP), and my government (from 2014-2019) invited tenders and had a loan agreement with JICA. We got requests to shift this car shed to Kanjurmarg and appointed a committee that said it was not feasible to shift. We still went to court and were told to pay Rs 3,000 crore, and then they would give a decision. Then we finalized Aarey. Finally, when Uddhav Thackeray was appointed as CM, he constituted another committee that said shifting the car shed would lead to a cost escalation of Rs 22,000 crore…the decision to shift the car shed out of Aarey was taken because of ego and not in the interest of Mumbaikars.”

The Uddhav Thackeray-led MVA (Maha Vikas Aghadi) government had deliberately stalled the project using environmental concerns as an excuse. The involvement of missionaries had come to the fore in stalling the project using environmentalists.

These days, activism is fashionable; many simply jump on the bandwagon to appear ‘cool’. Aarey protests are led by Aarey Conservation Group and supported by NGOs Vanashakti, Greenline, SPROUTS, Praja, National Environment Watch, AGNI, etc. The protests received support from the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in 2015 and both Shiv Sena and Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS). 

On the face of it, this seems like a protest by NGOs concerned about the environment. But dig a little deeper into the activities and antecedents of these NGOs, and a different story will emerge – a story of how missionary-funded NGOs are trying to derail development in Bharat under the garb of environmental protection.

The Aarey protests gathered steam only after the government decided to use a plot earlier reserved as a cemetery in Aarey for the Metro. Many of these NGOs are under the scanner of Central authorities for their dubious antecedents and activities. Vanashakti, one of the leading NGOs involved here, is run by a lethal combination of Abrahamics and Marxists. Abrahamics and Marxists have always joined hands to undermine Bharat in some form, and the latest ploy is environmental activism.

The political nature of activism became clear when environmentalists maintained a convenient silence even as the Uddhav Thackeray government set out to commercialize the Aarey land. The Thackeray government was commercializing the plot on the one hand, and on the other, the MVA government’s indecisiveness affected the Mumbai metro project.

The Mumbai Metro was one of the city’s most ambitious projects expected to ease the traffic load on the local trains and roads. However, the project turned into a white elephant, all thanks to woke activism actively supported by Shiv Sena, Congress, and NCP, who later joined hands to form the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government.

Armchair activists conveniently stall projects while the common public suffers due to inordinate project delays. The wokes would continue lecturing the commoners on the necessity to ‘save the environment’ from the convenience of their air-conditioned rooms. In contrast, common folk continues sweating it out on the road.

They can afford to grandstand because, unlike the common Mumbaikar who depends on public transport, wokes have fuel-guzzling, environment-damaging SUVs at their disposal. The common Mumbaikar, meanwhile, would be paying higher taxes, waiting longer for the metro that would save travel time, and continue to suffer health hazards posed by pollution.

The activism is not about saving the environment but political agenda. This is evident from the fact that the activism restarted as soon as the Shinde-Fadnavis combine returned to power, replacing the Uddhav Thackeray-led MVA.

(Featured Image Source: TOI)

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