Palghar to be a district

The sea-facing, semi-urban township of Palghar could be the new 36th district of Maharashtra, following the Democratic Front government’s plans to partition Thane, the nation’s most populous district, before May 1.
The announcement to carve out a Palghar district was made by state revenue minister Balasaheb Thorat in response to a query by Bala Nandgaonkar (MNS) in the state legislative assembly. Thorat said a formal announcement to elevate the industrial taluka into a district would be made before the 62nd Maharashtra Day celebrations.
Officials said the decision to split Thane was to help improve planning and implementation of welfare schemes in tribal and semi-urban pockets, which constitute the new district.
The massive population explosion in the last decade in Thane district had tilted the balance of development in favour of the urban talukas of Thane, Kalyan, Ulhasnagar and Bhiwandi, leaving tribal pockets of Jawahar, Mokhada, Vikramgadh, Talasari and Wada development-malnourished.
The skewed allocation of development funds and administrative difficulties in monitoring welfare projects, given that the top-line district bureaucracy is based here, resulted in near neglect of the tribal talukas.
The district boundaries will be redrawn and the proposed Palghar district will include the eight tribal-dominated talukas of Mokhada, Jawahar, Talasari, Vikramgadh, Wada, Dahanu, Palghar and Vasai. Thane district’s jurisdiction will include the urban talukas of Thane, Bhiwandi, Kalyan, Ulhasnagar, Ambernath, Murbad and Shahapur.
The partition will also mean redrawing the political map of Thane district. As against its strength of 24 assembly seats and four Lok Sabha seats, Thane district’s representation in the state assembly will reduce to 18. Palghar will comprise a Lok Sabha seat and assembly segments of Dahanu, Vikramgadh, Palghar, Boisar, Nalasopara and Vasai.

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