A day Governor BS Koshiyari was denied permission to use the state aircraft for an official visit to Uttarakhand, CM Uddhav Thackeray took off for his tour of Jawhar in Palghar district from the helipad at Mahalaxmi racecourse instead of the Raj Bhawan one which he has been using ever since he became CM.
As per reports the Chief Minister also used the racecourse for his landing upon his return. Amid conjectures regarding the CM's reason to abandon the Raj Bhawan helipad, a senior official stated that though the reason for this change of operations is unknown, it has nothing to do with the treatment meted out to Koshiyari a day before.
“In anticipation, the CM took the decision,” another senior official was quoted saying.
Koshyari was set to visit his home state Uttarakhand on Thursday, where the Tapovan barrage got washed away following the tumultuous flash floods triggered by a snow avalanche.
However, when the governor reached the airport to take off, he was informed by the pilot that the flight had not got the required approval till then.
Opposition leaders including Former Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis slammed the Thackeray govt terming this move as 'childish behavior'.
The development comes amid the ongoing face-off between the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi government and Governor on several issues including the 12 appointments to the Legislative council.
Taking into cognizance the inconvenience caused to the Governor, the CM noted that Raj Bhavan was informed on Wednesday evening that they have not been updated regarding the permission for Governor to travel. The CMO further held the authorities at the Raj Bhavan responsible for not informing the Governor and not taking adequate measures for his travel.
However, during his visit to Jawhar, the CM refused to talk about the controversy over the governor's flight but said that there is a potential to construct airstrips in Jawhar and other areas so that aircraft can take off and land.
He also took this opportunity to take a dig at BJP saying that simply carving out a district was not enough as it needs to be developed as well.