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Odisha tragedy: Maharashtra Congress leader Thorat seeks Railway minister's resignation

Thorat said the Union government was not a sensitive one and demanded to know what had happened to the much-touted 'Kavach' anti-collision mechanism
Last Updated : 03 June 2023, 10:06 IST

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Senior Maharashtra Congress leader Balasaheb Thorat on Saturday demanded the resignation of Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw after the massive three-train collision in Odisha a day earlier in which more than 200 people have been killed.

Addressing a press conference, Thorat said the Union government was not a sensitive one and demanded to know what had happened to the much-touted 'Kavach' anti-collision mechanism that was supposed to prevent such incidents.

"The railway minister is never seen even at the inauguration of new trains by the prime minister. He should resign after this tragic accident," Thorat demanded. Speaking on political issues in the state, Thorat said Bharatiya Janata Party leader Pankaja Munde was being sidelined in her party and that the doors of the Congress were open for her. "Pankaja is the daughter of late Gopinath Munde, who had excellent relations with everyone cutting across party lines. He contributed to BJP's growth in Maharashtra. It is sad she is being sidelined," he said.

Queried on the two-day meeting that began here on Friday to review the Congress' chances on 48 Lok Sabha seats from Maharashtra, Thorat said district level functionaries are explaining to the leadership that the party base is good in each of the constituencies.

Thorat, who is the Congress Legislature Party leader, said the feedback will help during seat sharing talks with Maha Vikas Aghadi allies Shiv Sena (UBT) and Nationalist Congress Party as the aim is to ensure the alliance wins the maximum number of seats.

Pankaja Munde, daughter of BJP stalwart late Gopinath Munde, is often at the centre of speculation that she has been sidelined since her defeat in the 2019 Assembly polls from stronghold Parli to Nationalist Congress Party leader and cousin Dhananjay Munde.

After the first expansion of the Eknath Shinde-Devendra Fadnavis cabinet in August 2022, she had said she might not have been “qualified enough” to get a berth, which once again led to talks about her being unhappy in the saffron camp.

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Published 03 June 2023, 10:06 IST

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