RSS-backed Marathi daily 'Tarun Bharat' came down heavily upon the Shiv Sena Wednesday for using the slogan 'Chowkidar Chor Hai' to target Prime Minister Narendra Modi, asking why the Uddhav Thackeray-led party did not quit the coalition government if that was the case.
It said the Shiv Sena was criticising the BJP constantly despite being part of BJP-led coalitions in Maharashtra and the Centre.
By using the slogan "Chowkidar Chor Hai" (the country's watchman is a thief), the editorial said, Thackeray was calling himself and his party ministers thieves.
"Why does not the Shiv Sena immediately leave the government if it feels that the watchman is a thief," it asked.
"The Shiv Sena does not intend to give up power nor does it have the guts to do so. There is a huge difference between the Shiv Sena when Balasaheb Thackeray was around and the Shiv Sena of today," the newspaper said.
Just as Congress chief Rahul Gandhi showed his inexperience by insulting the prime minister by using the word "chor", Thackeray exposed his own inexperience by using the same slogan, it claimed.
The editorial also questioned why the Shiv Sena had suddenly taken up the Ram Mandir issue.
"It is because the Shiv Sena is scared of the 2019 elections... The Shiv Sena is not ready to accept that the younger brother (the BJP) has now become the elder brother (in the alliance)," it claimed.
It is the Sena's illusion that it can come to power by pursuing the Ram temple issue, it said.
Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray Monday mouthed the Congress' oft-repeated jibe of "Chowkidar Chor Hai" made in the context of the Rafale fighter jet deal.
Addressing a rally in Solapur district of Maharashtra, Thackeray used the slogan in a different context, without referring to the Rafale issue.
Saamana, the Sena's mouthpiece, in its editorial Wednesday targeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his 'power is like oxygen for some people' remark, claiming the BJP broke the alliance with it in 2014 for the sake of power.