Won’t speak against Shiv Sena: Modi
TASGAON (Mah): Notwith-standing the bitter parting just before Maharashtra elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said he would “not utter a single word” against Shiv Sena out of respect for late Bal Thackeray, an apparent indication of possible post-poll truck with BJP’s erstwhile ally.
“Political pundits are saying why is Modi not criticising Shiv Sena in his speeches (during poll campaign).
This is the first election in absence of late Bal Thackeray, for whom I have great respect. I have decided not to utter a single word against Shiv Sena. This is my tribute to Balasaheb Thackeray,” Modi said.
“There are some things which are above politics…. There are feelings. Not everything should be linked to politics,” the 64-year-old BJP leader said a poll rally at Tasgaon in Sangli District of western Maharashtra.
His remarks came hours after Shiv Sena leader Aditya Thackeray attacked BJP, accusing it of “backstabbing” Bal Thackeray by snapping ties with his party over seat sharing in Maharashtra Assembly polls.
“BJP grew in Maharashtra by holding the hand of Shiv Sena. However, as soon as the party came to power at the Centre, it snapped ties with the Sena. By doing this, the BJP has back-stabbed late Balasaheb Thackeray,” Shiv Sena’s Youth Wing President Aditya Thackeray said in Nashik last night.
Balasaheb always considered Sena’s alliance partner BJP as a family, Aditya said adding, “Nonetheless, the BJP parted ways with us over seat sharing.”
Modi also invoked Chhatrapati Shivaji, Shiv Sena’s biggest icon for the Maratha pride plank.
He hit back at Pawar who had attacked the BJP saying that the people who had termed Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj a ‘looter’ were invoking the warrior king to seek votes.
“Stop challenging our ‘Shiv Bhakti’,” Modi said.
“When BJP decided to make me PM nominee, I came to the Raigad Fort in Maharashtra and paid obeisance at Shivaji’s Samadhi. I prayed that I also should get the strength to serve people of India, he said. (PTI)