After woman MLA attends session with infant, Maha Legislature gets ‘Hirkani Room’

A day after a woman MLA attended the Maharashtra Assembly session with her 10-week-old infant son, the state Legislature here got a small baby-care centre, here on Tuesday.

The centre is named ‘Hirkani Room’ symbolising the legendary courage of a milkmaid who was stranded in the Raigad Fort during the reign of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, but showing courage, she climbed down the steep hillock at the dead of the night to be reunited with her little child awaiting her in a village below the mountain.

The Hirkani Room was inaugurated by Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) MLA from Deolali (Nashik) Saroj Ahire Wagh – who shot to fame when she carried her two-and-half-months old son, Prashansak to the legislature on Monday.

In the presence of Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, Ahire Wagh inaugurated the room – Hirkani means ‘diamond dust’ – with a cradle with a folding mosquito net, a small medical facility manned by a lady doctor and two nurses plus other requirements for child-care.

Present were Ahire Wagh’s family members, Ministers Tanaji Sawant, Deepak Kesarkar and other dignitaries at the small ceremony in the Room No. 106 of the legislature extension building.

Scores of excited legislators cutting across party lines met Ahire Wagh, played, blessed and clicked photos with the ‘youngest’ entrant to the state legislature since Monday.

On hearing of the development, Shinde had felicitated the MLA Saroj, her husband, Pravin Wagh and other relatives on Monday evening in his office.

On Tuesday, NCP’s Leader of Opposition Ajit Pawar and other leaders also met the lady MLA and her child and lauded her efforts to combine her duties towards her constituents and responsibilities to her baby boy.

The Hirkani Room will enable young mothers to bring their minor kids to the legislature, feed them and take care as required while they can also fulfil their legislative duties as elected representatives, said an official.

On Monday, Wagh Ahire had also expressed a desire to have such a day-care facility or a creche to enable women legislators to bring their children during the sessions.

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