Pune: Union Minister Sharad Pawar on Friday criticised the reported `regionalism` and differences within the Maharashtra Cabinet on fund allocation for drought- affected areas of the state.
Referring to media reports, Pawar, whose NCP is a part of the ruling Democratic Front government led by Congress, said it was a "matter of concern" if objections were being taken in the Cabinet over provision of money for ensuring water supply to a particular region.
"It is wrong to criticise in the Cabinet meeting if funds are allotted for water supply in a particular region," Pawar said, adding that this kind of differences was a "matter of concern".
Pawar was addressing a function held by an organisation of people hailing from drought-affected Satara and Sangli.
He said such controversies struck a discordant note, harming the cohesive statehood of Maharashtra for which many people sacrificed their lives.
The NCP president also defended his nephew and Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, accused of hasty sanctioning of large number of dams during his tenure as irrigation minister. He said there was "nothing wrong" if the government relaxed rules and took decisions to start projects in drought-prone regions.
"We were told by the late YB Chavan (the first Chief Minister of Maharashtra) that ministers should read the notes on files but also go beyond it by visualising the anguished face of the common man who is facing the problem," he said.
Water situation in the state was "serious" and the next five months till the onset of the monsoon would be difficult, he said, and urged people to "save every drop of water".
Senior activist and MLA Ganpatrao Deshmukh was felicitated with YB Chavan memorial award on the occasion.