Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Raj shuns Hindutva, says he is for M’rashtra

Raj shuns Hindutva, says he is for M’rashtra
Clean Media Correspondent

Mumbai, August 22 (CMC) Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) leader Raj Thackeray on Tuesday, taking an extremely subtle swipe at son-of-the-soil espousing Shiv Sena, made it clear to the people that his party cutting across the communities and religions “is for Maharashtra”.

The procession and rally organised to protest against the inefficiency of the police and home minister in tackling the August 11 vandalism which left two dead and scores of policemen injured, the MNS leader without mincing words said: “Let me make it clear that I am not for Hindutva... I am for Maharashtra. Period.”

The sudden change in Raj’s political language at the rally revealed that the MNS leader, recently in the news for helping his ailing cousin Uddhav and paying visit to his uncle Bal Thackeray, has come a long way in his grass-root political understanding.

Decrying the violence, Raj took out a procession from the sea-side Girgaum Chowpatty to Azad Maidan, expressed empathy for the police personnel in the lower echelons. “I am there for you (police)... for women cops who were molested, I will certainly not tolerate this. I am also there for the media who was attacked,” he said.

While projecting himself as the “protectors of law and order”, the MNS leader slammed state Home Minister R R Patil, city Police Commissioner Arup Patnaik and Assistant Police Commissioner Vasant Dhoble, who was in the news for carrying out raids on beer bars and pubs operating late in the night. 

Unlike in the past wherein the MNS leader had given longer vitriolic speeches, this time it was short, incisive with zero expletives. 

Notwithstanding the crowd turnout, around one lakh, the MNS leader for the first time without resorting to caustic laced gimmickry, hammered only one point — Maharashtra needs new political leader to protect its interest.

While several political observers here feel that the Tuesday’s rally seems to be a show of strength and a race to score over cousin Uddhav who had rushed on Monday to the hastily repaired Amar Jawan, a memorial near Azad Maidan, the hidden message to the public was that the MNS can effectively manage the political space hitherto occupied by the Shiv Sena.

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