Raj Thackeray’s uncharacteristically peaceful demonstration against toll plazas in the state may have ended for now, but other political parties are not ready to drop the ball in the form of a readymade poll issue.
Bharatiya Janata Party MLA Girish Bapat yesterday demanded a white paper regarding how much toll has been collected by the state government so far at 144 toll plazas across the state.
Bapat also claimed that the agitation on the issue was originally set off by BJP and Shiv Sena, and both parties have been fighting hard for the cause since the last five years in the state assembly.
“The state government should bring out a white paper with details on how much money has been accumulated through PWD and MSRDC at 144 toll plazas in Maharashtra,” said Bapat. He alleged that the government was robbing the common man through contractors deployed at the toll plazas.
“It is hard to believe that the government is yet to recover the construction cost of roads where toll is being collected. Considering the rise in number of vehicles on the roads in the past few years, these claims do not hold water,” said Bapat.
“MNS’s anti-toll agitation has garnered much hype. However, Sena-BJP workers were the ones who first raised this issue in Kolhapur. But, when BJP protests, the media hardly shows any interest in covering it,” said Bapat.