Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray (Photo Credit: Screengrab)
In a veiled reference to its former ally Bharatiya Janata Party in Maharashtra, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday asserted that he has not left ‘Hindutva’ neither has changed his ‘colour’ despite finding new allies in the state post 2019Assembly Elections. Thackeray, whose party is considered to be a staunch supporter of Hindutva, ditched the long-term ally BJP and allied with the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP). “I have chosen a new political path by taking along old political rivals as allies. I have not changed my colour, my core (“Antarang”). It continues to remain saffron,” he said while addressing Shiv Sena party workers on the birth anniversary of party founder late Balasaheb Thackeray.
Countering criticism that left Hindutva for the sake of power, Thackeray said he took the extreme step because they were backstabbed by pre-poll allies. “We have taken the extreme step because we have been backstabbed by our old allies, they have breached our trust and failed to fulfill their commitment. They told me that I lied and tried to prove that I am a liar. This is the different path I have accepted and have joined hands with the people whom we were fighting,” he said.
His remark also holds significance as his estranged cousin and MNS chief Raj Thackeray took a dig at him while speaking at his party’s function earlier in the evening by saying “I don’t change the colour of my party to form the government.”
MNS chief Raj Thackeray has indicated that he is all set to carry forward uncle Bal Thackeray’s legacy, unveiling his party's new saffron flag and announcing his support to the Modi government for evicting Muslim infiltrators from Pakistan and Bangladesh.
“There can be a debate on the Citizenship Amendment Act but why should we shelter someone who has come to India illegally from outside,” Raj Thackeray said. The new MNS flag bears the Raj Mudra (royal seal) of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and appears to spell out the new direction that his party looks set to take.