The proposed Mumbai coastal road will follow in the footsteps of the railway terminus at Fort and international airport at Andheri in becoming one more iconic landmark to be named after Maratha warrior king, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. Even before work on it can start, the Shiv Sena has demanded that the project be named after the Maratha ruler. The proposal was tabled in the municipal corporation group leaders’ meeting on Monday and passed unanimously.
Sena, the ruling party in the civic body, had promised to build a coastal road in its manifesto. As the proposal to appoint project management consultants for the south end project was tabled in the standing committee, party leaders demanded a presentation on the project. When it became clear that project works were likely to begin soon, Sena leaders latched onto the opportunity and demanded that the project be named after Chhatrapati Shivaji before any other party could take up the issue.
Shiv Sena MP Gajanan Kirtikar, in a letter sent to house leader Yashwant Jadhav, has demanded that the coastal road be named as “Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Sagari Mahamarg”. Mr Jadhav has asked mayor Vishwanath Mahadesh-war to bring up the proposal at the group leaders’ meeting. Apart from appeasing its Marathi vote bank, Sena’s move is seen as a clever ploy to checkmate ruling ally BJP, which has been praying for the Maratha king’s blessings to grow in the state. Mr Mahadeshwar said, “Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj is an icon of not just Maharashtra, but the entire nation. He taught people to live with pride. Hence, Sena demanded that the coastal road be named after him.”
Earlier, the Congress had named the Fort railway terminus and international airport at Andheri after Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.