Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Monday took a jibe at an unnamed opposition leader, warning the said person if breaks were not applied, ‘an accident is inevitable.’ The Rajya Sabha MP tweeted in Marathi, “It is difficult for a downed train and failed opposition leader to apply brakes. Accident is inevitable.”
Raut’s tweet was, in all likelihood, a response to Maharashtra’s leader of opposition, Devendra Fadnavis, who, at a public rally in Mumbai last evening, lashed out at the Sena, and its supremo, Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray.
“You feel that you may have reduced my political weight by stabbing me in the back, but this Devendra Fadnavis will not stop till he pulls down your Babri (Mosque)-like edifice of power,” the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader said on Sunday, accusing the BJP’s former ally of ‘abandoning’ Hindutva.
Fadnavis, who is Thackeray’s predecessor in the state’s top post, was himself responding to his successor’s remarks, made at a Sena rally in Mumbai, on Saturday.
“The BJP is playing ugly politics. I wonder if it is the same party we considered our friend for 25 years. We didn’t recognise them back then. However, after the mask of Hindutva came off, their true and perverse face is exposed,” the Sena chief remarked.
Ever since they spilt in late 2019, the BJP – the principal opposition party in Maharashtra – has been consistently at loggerheads with the Shiv Sena, which is the largest member of the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) coalition, of which the other two constituents are the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Congress. The MVA has frequently accused the BJP of trying to topple its government, a charge the saffron party has repeatedly denied.
In recent days, the two sides have bickered over issues such as the use of loudspeakers in mosques in the state, a controversy stoked by Uddhav Thackeray’s cousin and Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray. They were also at opposing ends of the Hanuman Chalisa row, started by independent lawmaker couple from Amravati: parliamentarian Navneet Rana and her husband, MLA Ravi Rana.