The Shiv Sena has extended support to today's Girgaum bandh by residents opposed to relocation from their dwellings due to the Metro-III project.
At a time when Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is firm on the project, the Sena, BJP's ruling alliance partner, has come out with vociferous opposition against various aspects of Colaba-Bandra-Seepz Metro-III line.
The MNS and Congress have also backed the bandh. Essential services have been exempted from the bandh and will be operational between 9 AM and 6 PM, said Pandurang Sakpal, the Sena vibhag pramukh for south Mumbai. There has been no untoward incident so far during the bandh, police said.
MNS's south Mumbai wing chief Arvind Gawde accused the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRCL) of offering Girgaum to the "vegetarian lobby" of Gujarati and Rajasthani builders.
As per project plans, 26 buildings need to be demolished to make way for the proposed Girgaum and Kalbadevi stations. Local residents are opposed as more than 600 families and over 200 commercial establishments will be affected. The state government has said the residents will be rehabilitated in the same area.
Sena president Uddhav Thackeray has asked Fadnavis to hold talks with the residents and hammer out a solution to their problem. Earlier, MMRCL also said in reply to an RTI query that the project affected people of the proposed Metro-III line are planned to be rehabilitated to Chakala, Oshiwara, Kurla, Vidyavihar and Wadala.