Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray, who has formed a government in the state recently, on Sunday asserted that Shiv Sena was always with the ideology of Hindutva. “I am still with the ideology of Hindutva and won’t ever leave it,” said Thackeray, who was speaking at a special session of the Maharashtra assembly, news agency PTI reported.
The Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi government passed the floor test in the state Assembly on Saturday. Altogether 169 MLAs voted in favour of the motion of confidence after the BJP, which has 105 MLAs, staged a walkout before the head count began in the 288-member House.
Speaking in the Assembly after Patole announced the appointment of Fadnavis, Uddhav Thackeray taunted the former CM over the latter’s impassioned pre-poll “Me punha yein” (I will return) assertion which had evoked many social media memes.
“I never said I will come back, but I came in this House,” Thackeray said. “I can assure this House and people of Maharashtra that I will not do anything at midnight. I will be working for the interests of the people,” he said.
Thackeray’s swipe was apparently about the early morning hush hush swearing-in of Fadnavis as CM on November 3, along with NCP leader Ajit Pawar as deputy chief minister, after night-long dramatic political developments in Mumbai and Delhi.
Patil also targeted Fadnavis. “He (Fadnavis) said he would return, but didn’t say where he will sit (in the House),” Patil said. “Now he has returned and is occupying this top post (of Leader of Opposition) which is of the same level as CM post,” Patil said.
The NCP leader expressed confidence that Fadnavis won’t be part of any efforts to dislodge the Thackeray-led government of the Sena-NCP-Congress combine.
Responding to the barbs over his “”Me punha yein” remarks, Fadnavis said he forgot to announce a time table about his return (as CM).
“Mera paani utarte dekh kinare par ghar mat bana lena, mein samundar hoon, laut kar vapis aaoonga ((Thinking the tide has ebbed, don’t you dare build your house on the coast, for I am the sea, and I will come back),” he said, quoting a famous sher (couplet).
Thackeray said he wont call Fadnavis an ‘opposition leader’, but a ‘responsible leader’. “If you would have been good to us then, all this (BJP-Shiv Sena split) would have not happened,” he added.
“I have learnt a lot of things from Fadvanis and I will always be friends with him. I am still with the ideology of ‘Hindutva’ and won’t ever leave it. In the past five years, I never betrayed the (BJP-Sena) government,” he said.