The Shiv Sena on Saturday said that India’s management of the coronavirus pandemic was dependent on the system created in the last 70 years by previous prime ministers, PTI reported. The remark, made in an editorial of the party’s mouthpiece Saamana, was a jibe at the Narendra Modi-government, which has often held past dispensations responsible for the current problems plaguing the country.

“The country is presently surviving thanks to the development works, projects set up by and the confidence given by the previous governments of Pandit Nehru, [Lal Bahadur] Shastri, Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi, PV Narasimha Rao, Manmohan Singh,” it said.

The article also attacked the Centre for carrying on with the Central Vista project in Delhi at a time when smaller neighbouring countries were sending aid to India.

“Bangladesh has sent 10,000 remdesivir vials, while Bhutan has sent medical oxygen,” the editorial noted. “Nepal, Myanmar and Sri Lanka have also offered help to ‘aatmanirbhar’ [self-reliant] India. But while poor countries are helping India in their own way, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is not ready to stop the ambitious project of Central Vista worth Rs 20,000 crore in Delhi.”

The project, an initiative of the Narendra Modi government, aims to redevelop a 3.2-km stretch called the Central Vista that lies at the heart of Lutyens Delhi built by the British in the 1930s. It involves tearing down and rebuilding several government buildings, including iconic landmarks, and constructing a new Parliament at a total cost of Rs 20,000 crore. The construction of the prime minister and vice president’s residences is likely to be over by 2022.

The Shiv Sena editorial added that as the world was battling a second wave of the pandemic and experts have predicted a third one, the Bharatiya Janata Party was engaged in cornering the Mamata Banerjee-led government in West Bengal.

“A sensitive and a nationalist government would not have thought about the political pros and cons and set up a national panel of all main political parties to discuss ways to defeat the pandemic,” the article stated.

Meanwhile, on Sunday, registered 4,03,738 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours, taking the tally of infections in the country to 2,22,96,414 since the pandemic broke out last year. The country’s toll climbed by 4,092 deaths to 2,42,362. India now has over 37 lakh active cases and 1,83,17,404 recoveries.

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