Surat : After assuming office of the Union Minister of State for Textiles and Railways, Darshana Jardosh has stirred political hornet’s nest in her home constituency in Surat.
On his maiden visit to her home constituency in Surat from where she is the Member of Parliament (MP) on Friday, Jardosh raised questions on the legal standing of the textile traders, the Federation of Surat Textile Traders Association (FOSTTA) and came down heavily on the Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SGCCI) for not giving her ‘credit’ for resolving the issues and demands of Surat’s trade and industry.
As Jardosh visited his home constituency for the first time after getting the charge as the Union Minister of State for Railways and Textiles, she was busy attending felicitation ceremonies organised by various trade and industry organisations.
During an event organised by FOSTTA, Jardosh said, “FOSTTA’s claim of being the organization of 65,000 textile traders is far from reality. First compile the data of the traders, workers, turnover of the textile markets and number of shops operating in the city and then put forth the genuine demands”
At a felicitation ceremony organised by the SGCCI on Saturday, Jardosh claimed that all the successive presidents of the chambers have their own agenda to follow during their one-year tenure. If the president is coming from the textile sector, he will give priority to the issues and demands of the textile industry and vice-a-versa. However, it is the role of the chamber to address issues and demands of all the industries and sectors in Surat and South Gujarat.
“We have the oldest Jari industry operating in Surat. Even our forefathers were running the Jari units. There is embroidery sector as well. However, Surat is not just the city of textiles and diamonds, but it has a huge presence of other allied sectors and industries as well. Being the apex body of the trade and commerce, it is the responsibility of the chamber to become the voice of all the sectors in the Centre and at the State level” said Jardosh, while addressing a mammoth gathering at the Surat International Exhibition and Convention Centre (SIECC) at Sarsana.
Jardosh pointed out that the textile sector did not come to the rescue of its migrant workforce during the coronavirus pandemic last year. Tens of thousands of migrant workers were fleeing the city to their home states, but the textile industrialists did not cared for these workers..
“The Central Government and the Railways made arrangement for the Shramik Special trains. More than 750 trains went empty from Surat. It was the resonsiblity of the textile industrialists to protect the workers during the tough situation of Covid-19, when they wanted to go to their home states” said Jardosh.
Political insiders said that Jardosh has stirred the political hornet’s nest by targeting the textile sector, consisting of the migrant population. The fact is that more than 95% of the migrant population is residing in the Navsari Parliamentary constituency represented by CR Paatil. This may cause an upset among the migrant voters, who have always stood behind the BJP during the assembly and the Parliamentary elections.
Sources said that the Gujarat State BJP President, CR Paatil has warned Jardosh regarding the political upset among the migrant voters, keeping in mind the Parliamentary elections in 2024 and the fast approaching Assembly election in the State.