After breaking off from its old ally BJP to form the recent government in Maharashtra, Shiv Sena president and Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said on Thursday that though he has found new allies in state politics, he has not changed his “saffron” colour.
Thackeray ditched the BJP after the Maharashtra assembly polls last year and formed the government with the help of the Congress and Sharad Pawar’s NCP. On Bal Thackeray’s birth anniversary which was on Thursday, Shiv Sena felicitated Uddhav Thackeray for fulfilling his promise to his father that he would install a Shiv Sena chief minister in the state. January 23 is
“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, apparently countering criticism that he forsook Hindutva for the sake of power.
Uddhav Thackeray’s remark prompted a barb from his estranged cousin and MNS chief Raj Thackeray, who, speaking at his party’s function earlier in the evening, said, “I don’t change the colour of my party to form the government.” Hitting out at the BJP, Uddhav Thackeray alleged that the former ally broke its pre-poll promise (to share the chief minister’s post) and tried to label him as a liar.
“The BJP had broken ties with the Sena in 2014 and formed government with “invisible” support. It was then that when you (BJP) were exposed,” he said.
After breaking off from BJP, the Shiv Sena has openly criticised its former ally for its faulty policies. Through its editorial in Saamana Shiv Sena has been critical of BJP’s reaction on anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protests. CM Uddhav Thackeray had even compared the attack on JNU students by alleged right-wing group to the 26/11 attack.