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Unsure of poll victory, BJP trying to ‘steal’ a Thackeray: Uddhav Thackeray on MNS chief-Amit Shah meeting

Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday accused the BJP of trying to “steal” a “Thackeray” to win elections, a remark coming in the wake of a meeting between MNS chief Raj Thackeray and Union Home Minister Amit Shah. Addressing a gathering in Nanded district, Uddhav Thackeray also said he was not bothered if the BJP took away his estranged cousin. Uddhav Thackeray’s swipe at BJP comes after Raj Thackeray met Shah in Delhi amid a buzz that the BJP is looking to ally with him for the Lok Sabha polls to boost its alliance in Maharashtra.

“BJP knows very well that they don’t get votes in the name of PM Narendra Modi in Maharashtra. People vote here in the name of (Bal) Thackeray. This realisation prompted the BJP to try to steal leaders from outside (BJP fold),” he said.

Alleging that BJP seed is “bogus”, he accused the party of trying to appropriate the legacy of Bal Thackeray. “First, they stole the photo of Bal Thackeray, but it doesn’t matter. Today, they are trying to steal another Thackeray….take it, I and my people are enough,” he said while concluding his two-day tour of Nanded and Hingoli districts in the Marathwada region.

Uddhav Thackeray, whose party is a constituent of the opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi and INDIA bloc, claimed even Christians and Muslims have no issue with his style of Hindutva.

“The image of Shiv Sena (undivided) was getting sullied when we were with the BJP. But since we severed ties with them, even members of Christian and Muslim communities are saying that they have no issues with our Hindutva ideology,” he added.

Raj Thackeray had parted ways with the Shiv Sena, when it was undivided, due to his differences with Uddhav and founded MNS in 2006. However, his MNS could not make much impact even though he is seen as a powerful orator and enjoys a certain following. His controversial comments against north Indians in the past had drawn sharp criticism from leaders of various political parties, including the BJP.

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Source: Economic Times