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Asian Age Online | Mumbai | January 26, 2020:: Launching a scathing attack on Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray, the Shiv Sena on Saturday said nothing justifies Raj Thackeray’s decision to change his party flag to saffron. The Sena accused Raj of making Hindutva its prime agenda in order to gain brownie points with the BJP for votes.
The MNS hit back saying Shiv Sena is suffering from loose motion as Raj continues to expose them.
Taking a swipe at the MNS chief, an editorial in the party mouthpiece Saamana on Saturday said that those alleging that the Sena had changed its colour for the sake of power should first look at their own face.
Taking potshots at Raj over his ideological shift towards Hindutva, the editorial said that it is not child’s play to deal with the Hindutva ideology as propagated by V.D. Savarkar and late party founder Balasaheb Thackeray.
“Raj and his 14-year-old party was established for the ‘Marathi Manoos’. But his party would be moving towards Hindutva. It can be said that the MNS has changed its path. But they are not going to get anything as earlier they had not done anything on the issue of Marathi Manoos,” the editorial said.
“The Sena had created awareness on the Hindutva agenda across the country. It has never left saffron. This colour will remain with us forever. Despite changing the flag of MNS, Raj’s flag would not get ideological support. The chances are less,” the editorial added.
In a tweet in Marathi, MNS spokesperson Sandeep Deshpande said, “Modern Afzal Khan has stabbed the back of Marathis and Hindus. Since MNS chief Raj Thackeray has kept his hands on the issue, the Shiv Sena is facing diarrhea through Saamana’s editorial, but don’t worry, we will treat it.”
The reports of the Raj-led party joining hands with the BJP have been doing the rounds after former chief minister Devendra Fadnavis met Raj Thackeray recently. After losing its long time alliance partner Shiv Sena, the BJP is looking for new allies in the state.
In the Vidhan Sabha polls later, the MNS could win only one seat despite contesting more than 100 seats.
Several Maratha outfits, including the Sambhaji Brigade, have objected to the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena’s newly minted flag incorporating Chhatrapati Shivaji’s royal seal or ‘Rajmudra’, with the Brigade approaching the Pune police on Thursday demanding that an FIR be lodged against MNS chief Raj Thackeray and his party for using the Maratha King’s seal for ‘crass’ political purposes. | The Hindu Online | Mumbai | January 24, 2020::
The Brigade leaders submitted a written application to the police urging a probe and an FIR against the ‘misuse’ of the seal.
Lashing out at Mr. Thackeray, the Brigade said it would also approach the State Election Commission to lodge a complaint against the MNS.
“Chhatrapati Shivaji’s Rajmudra [royal seal] was created by the king for the welfare of the people. Its purpose was to ensure a fair and just administration, and it lent a great weight to Shivaji’s decisions owing to his ideals of Swarajya. It is a symbol of great import and significance to the admirers and followers of the Chhatrapati. But it is highly inappropriate for any party to use the seal for petty political purposes,” said Santosh Shinde, district president, Sambhaji Brigade.
He said the Brigade would also approach the Chhatrapati’s direct descendants including ex-Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)-turned BJP leader Udayanraje Bhosale and urge them to pursue the case vigorously.
The famous first lines of the seal say, “Ever growing in splendour like the moon on the first day of the bright half of the month, and adored by the world, this seal of Shivaji, the son of Shahaji, shines for the welfare of all.”
Saying the Brigade strongly condemned the intentions of the MNS, Mr. Shinde said Mr. Thackeray’s party, which had thus based its politics on regional chauvinism and social divisiveness, had no moral authority to use the seal.
“The MNS keeps changing its colours like a chameleon. When it failed to secure any votes on its earlier flag, it has now taken recourse to a new stratagem by incorporating Shivaji’s seal for seeking votes…we strongly condemn Mr. Thackeray and his party and we will keep opposing them.”
While his party did not contest, Mr. Thackeray’s spirited campaigning for the Congress and the NCP in the general election last year had come a cropper, with the BJP-Sena candidates winning with huge margins in the very constituencies the MNS chief had held rallies.
In the Assembly polls held in October, Mr. Thackeray entered the poll arena and contested in 100 seats, winning only one (Kalyan Rural).
Read this also:: Shiv Sena vs MNS: Who will win the ‘Hindutva’ space?
Courtesy: Asian Age, The Hindu & DNA.