Union Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday said there is a need to decongest the financial capital as the densely populated city is facing “disastrous consequences”, referring to mounting coronavirus cases.
Gadkari, the road transport minister, also offered to allocate plots for Dharavi’s tanneries along the upcoming Mumbai-Delhi express highway.In comments that come amid reports that many including migrants battling hunger due to the pandemic, Gadkari also said that food warehouses are overflowing and grains are rotting as well.
It can be noted that the financial capital is the most affected in terms of number of virus cases, accounting for over a fifth of the overall COVID-19 infections in the country.
At present, there are reports of the medical facilities being close to being overwhelmed, even as the number of patients continues rising fast in some localities like the Dharavi slum, which alone has reported over 1,600 cases. “There is a need to decongest Mumbai, look at the disastrous consequences that we are facing. The population is very dense, which leads to a lot of problems,” Gadkari said speaking at a webinar organised by the Maharashtra State Cooperative Bank Federation.Gadkari, who handles the MSME portfolio as well, said there are 1.5 lakh people in Dharavi who work exclusively in the tanneries or leather trade and offered them space next to the upcoming Mumbai-New Delhi Expressway being executed by the Central Government.
Stressing that decentralisation and decongesting is the need of the hour, he said the Maharashtra Government should approach the Centre for having a leather works cluster along the expressway within the State.