HomePoliticsUddhav re-asserts Sena’s ‘Hindutva’ credentials at Aurangabad rally, says ‘if BJP have...

Uddhav re-asserts Sena’s ‘Hindutva’ credentials at Aurangabad rally, says ‘if BJP have real men, then they should go protect Kashmiri pandits’


Mumbai: Vociferously advocating his party’s ‘Hindutva’ credentials, Shiv Sena president and Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Wednesday launched a scathing attack on the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) at a mega party rally in Aurangabad. He chastised the BJP for failing to protect Kashmiri pandits while stated that the latter, once the Shiv Sena’s long-time ally, could capture power in Delhi (Centre) only because of the help rendered by the late Sena founder Balasaheb Thackeray.  

Thackeray further argued that the late Balasaheb Thackeray had never exhorted the Sena and its activists to hate Muslims nor did Shiv Sena preach hatred towards other religions. 

Thackeray, addressing his first public rally at Aurangabad, outside Mumbai after more than six months, hit out at the BJP, particularly former chief minister Devendra Fadnavis, by stressing the Shiv Sena’s contribution in the Babri Mosque demolition and said that the BJP was no one to teach or measure the Sena’s ‘Hindutva.’  

The Sena president lashed out at the BJP saying, “Whom are you teaching ‘Hindutva’? You would not have been able to take Delhi without Balasaheb Thackeray and the Sena’s help…If you (BJP) are real men, then go and protect Kashmiri pandits and Hindus in the Valley, 27 of whom have lost their lives in the last two months. But no spokesperson of the BJP is willing to speak on this. On the other hand, I, as CM of Maharashtra, have promised them to do everything I can in my power.” He further added, “Hindutva is not about wearing saffron caps, but one should have Hindutva in one’s minds.” 

Commenting on ex-BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma insulting Prophet Muhammad, Thackeray said that a BJP spokesperson cannot be the country’s spokesperson nor can the BJP’s stance be the country stance. 

The Sena president further stated, “Today, because of such unwarranted remarks by a nondescript spokesperson, the Arab countries have ganged up against India and the Prime Minister’s pictures are being thrown into dustbins at some places. This is an insult to the Prime Minister’s post and the country’s honour. It only proves a BJP spokesperson cannot be the country’s spokesperson nor can the BJP’s stance be the country stance.” 

Thackeray remarked that as prices of essential commodities have skyrocketed, the BJP, in order to cover its ineptness at handling economic crises, were bent on searching for shivlings under the Taj Mahal and the Gyanvapi mosque. He lauded RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat’s statements urging restraint over the Gyanvapi controversy. 

The Maharashtra Chief Minister cleverly sidestepped the issue of announcing the official renaming of Aurangabad to ‘Sambhajinagar’ (after Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj who was brutally murdered by Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb).

The BJP and the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) led by Raj Thackeray (Uddhav’s estranged cousin) have frequently taunted the Sena of dragging its feet over implementing the name change ever since its ideologically opposed alliance with the Sharad Pawar-led Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and the Congress to form the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in 2019. 

Commenting upon the renaming controversy, Thackeray remarked, “The BJP picks on such issues only because they are out of power. Balasaheb Thackeray had first made this promise (renaming Aurangabad to Sambhajinagar) in 1988. Now, will the BJP remind us? Rest assured, I will rename the city to Sambhajinagar, but I want my Sambhajinagar to be renamed only after we have provided amenities, given water supply and improved infrastructure.” 

He pointedly narrated the tale of the abduction and killing of Indian Army rifleman Aurangzeb by terrorists in South Kashmir’s Shopian district in 2018, stating that the Shiv Sena respected and welcomed all those who gave their lives for the motherland irrespective of religion or caste.

The Chief Minister’s address launched the Sena’s campaign for the upcoming civic polls, and said that while he could affect a name change right now, he questioned the pointlessness of the exercise if Aurangabad still remained deprived of basic civic amenities. 

Taking on the BJP, he said that despite the MVA cabinet approving a proposal to rename the Aurangabad airport to Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj Airport and the proposal having been submitted to the Centre, the BJP government had yet to act on it. “Instead of criticizing the Sena, why cannot the Maharashtra BJP leaders put pressure on the Centre to rename Aurangabad airport?”  questioned Thackeray.  

Commenting on the BJP’s ‘betrayal’ of the Sena, he said it was ironic that those parties (Congress and NCP) against whom the Sena had fought had given it respect, while the BJP, with whom the Sena had been friends for 25-30 years, were now irredeemably hostile towards the Shiv Sena. 


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