Maharashtra’s public works department minister Ashok Chavan on Wednesday alleged a political conspiracy behind the Tuesday’s gathering of migrants at Mumbai’s Bandra railway station and a social media campaign which followed demanding ‘President’s rule’ in Maharashtra.
Chavan also said the state government was investigating who was patronised the campaign on social media and who created the confusion that led migrant workers to flock the Bandra station.
“We are investigating the entire episode of crowding by the migrant workers at the Bandra station on Tuesday evening. We are investigating who was patronising the social media campaign holding the state government responsible for it. It smells of a political conspiracy as the demands are being made for the imposition of the President’s Rule in Maharashtra. It needs to come to fore who was behind the messages and wrong information spread among the workers,” said Chavan at a video press conference.
Maharashra Congress president and revenue minister Balasaheb Thorat too participated in the press conference.
Chavan who is also a former chief minister said that Tuesday’s incident was very serious and could have led to a stampede had it not been handled well by the police.
He also alleged that a letter issued by South Central Railways about their plans to start special trains for the migrant workers created confusion among the migrants and led to the crowding at the Bandra station.
“There was a letter issued from the office of the chief commercial manager’s office in Secunderabad that created confusion among the workers. The letter was making rounds on the social media and led the workers to believe that the Railways were making special arrangements for them. It was an irresponsible act of the Railways administration. I am not blaming anybody, but presenting the facts related to the crowding by the migrants,” he said.
Thorat said that the Railways had taken online booking till Tuesday afternoon before announcing the cancellation of all the trains. “The confusion among the migrants led to the incident. It did not pertain to any specific community or the religion. The crowd included migrants from all communities,” he said.