Shirdi: The Saibaba trust here has sent a proposal to Maharashtra government for developmental projects worth Rs 1,200 crore in Shirdi for the Nashik Kumbh mela and Saibaba's 'samadhi' centenary celebration, Maharashtra Minister of State for Home Ram Shinde has said.
A proposal has also been made to set up a Shirdi Development Authority for the Saibaba's samadhi centenary celebration, he said. "Considering the heavy rush of devotees expected for the Kumbh mela in Nashik later this year and the Shri Saibaba Samadhi Centenary Utsav scheduled in 2018, the Saibaba Sansthan Trust has prepared a proposal for developmental projects worth about Rs 1,200 crore," he said here yesterday.
Shinde, the Guardian Minister of Ahmednagar district, yesterday held a meeting with Nashik Divisional Revenue Commissioner Eknath Davle, Ahmednagar District Collector Anil Kavade, Superintendent of Police Lakhmi Gautam and Saibaba trust's executive officer Rajendra Jadhav in this regard.
At least one crore devotees are expected to attend the Kumbh mela in Nashik and nearly 25 lakh visitors are likely to arrive in Shirdi for the event, he said.
The government has made a proposal of Rs 197 crore for developmental works, including Ahmednagar-Manmad bypass road of 23 kms at the cost of Rs 140 crore, he said. "To provide basic amenities to the lakhs of devotees, we are thinking of forming Shirdi Development Authority for the overall development of Shirdi's roads, water supply, security and setting up CCTVs in the town. We will soon meet Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadanvis in this regard," he said.
When the minister's attention was drawn towards the proposal for setting up the development authority being opposed earlier, he said now the state government has changed and the CM will find a proper solution to the issue.
Shinde asked the police to take steps to prevent growing thefts of ornaments, mobile and cash of the devotees and also instructed to start a police range in the premises of Saibaba's shrine so that people could lodge complaints there.
To a question if deploying Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) personnel at the temple was being considered, the minister said that so far no such arrangement has been made.