India

Eknath Shinde government reinstated system of giving pension to those who went to jail in emergency

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Maharashtra’s Eknath Shinde government, reversing the decision of the previous Uddhav Thackeray-led government, on Thursday released a pension scheme for those jailed during the 1975 Emergency. In a press conference, Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and Deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis have announced the release of pension scheme for those who are in jail in protest against the emergency period.

In fact, this scheme was originally started by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in 2018, which was overturned by the Uddhav Thackeray government. After this announcement made on Thursday, Devendra Fadnavis said that all those people who went to jail during the Emergency of 1975-1977 will be given pension by the Maharashtra government.

Devendra Fadnavis said that this decision was taken in 2018 but the previous government had called it off. Fadnavis said that now 3,600 people will get pension and 800 more applications will be approved on the basis of merit. He further said that not only Jan Sangh and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, all political workers participated in the movement against Emergency. My father was in jail for two years.

CM Eknath Shinde said that earlier in the day, the Maharashtra government reduced VAT on petrol and diesel by Rs 5 and Rs 3 per liter respectively. This decision will come into effect from Thursday night. This decision will put a burden of Rs 6,000 crore on the state exchequer. After the cabinet meeting at the secretariat ‘Mantralaya’, Shinde said that this would benefit the common man.

Significantly, former Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had closed the pension scheme of the previous BJP-led government. While canceling the scheme, the then government had said that the decision has been taken due to sharp fall in revenue. Along with this, the government had also reversed the decision of the previous Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) regime to stop direct election of village sarpanches and city council/nagar panchayat presidents.

At the same time, before the Uddhav Thackeray government, the Fadnavis-led state government from 2014 to 2019 allowed the election of sarpanches and city council presidents, which was abolished in 2020.

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