Maharashtra govt faces backlash after allocating Rs 5.98 cr for Dy CM's publicity
Mumbai/IBNS: The Maharashtra government will hire public relations agencies for the office of the Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar to relay his announcements through social media platforms and SMS, a move that has been severely criticised by the opposition.
Even though the state government has Directorate General of Information and Public Relations (DGIPR) and its statewide network at its disposal to do the job, it has earmarked yearly Rs 5.98 crore for publicity by PR agencies on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Telegram, Instagram, Blogger, WhatsApp Bulletin, Telegram channel as well as SMS.
The notification issued by the Maharashtra government said that the DGIPR will be responsible to see that there will not be any duplication of Information by the Chief Minister's office and the Dy CM's office.
Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, who holds finance and planning portfolio, will convey the decisions, through the PR agencies, in connection with his department and those taken in the meetings held by him with other departments.
The opposition as well as the common people have hit out at the state government for allocating crores of rupees for publicity. Many said that the money should have been used for the betterment of the society which has taken a huge blow due to the second wave of coronavirus.
Writer and columnist Shobha De termed the allocation "Criminal waste of money".
Criminal waste of money!!!! https://t.co/4DS15cQpmz— Shobhaa De (@DeShobhaa) May 13, 2021
Critcising the move, BJP National General Secretary I/C of Maharashtra, CT Ravi tweeted, "Cash starved Maharashtra to pay 6 crore to handle the social media accounts of deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar."
Cash starved Maharashtra to pay 6 crore to handle the social media accounts of deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar.— C T Ravi 🇮🇳 ಸಿ ಟಿ ರವಿ (@CTRavi_BJP) May 13, 2021
No words to comment about the "priorities" of the #MahaVasooliAghadi Government.
Lage Raho CM @OfficeofUT 🙏
Several netizens pointed out how the money could buy equipment and medicines key to the treatment of Covid-19 patients.
Almost 150 ventilators or 700 Icu Beds or 800 Icu Monitors can be bought in Rs 6 Cr. spent by Maharashtra Govt on Ajit Pawar— Dr. Vedika (@vishkanyaaaa) May 13, 2021
Some Twitteraties also termed the move as an example of "poor governance".
Maharashtra govt to spend 6cr on social media handling of ajit pawar— Naman (@Naman090) May 13, 2021
Meanwhile public: pic.twitter.com/ySbQolkTNE