Sena takes on BJP with posters, then backtracks
Uddhav distances himself from row; all eyes on Dussehra rally today
MUMBAI: A day before its annual Dussehra rally in the city, the Shiv Sena took on its ally the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), but this time, through photographs.
Sena workers put up posters in Mumbai on Wednesday that showed Prime Minister Narendra Modi with late Sena patriarch Bal Thackeray, an apparent barb that widened the rift between the allies.
The posters, which sprang up in Dadar, opposite the Sena headquarters, as well as in Ghatkopar, featured several leaders, but reserved the biggest space for a photograph of Modi, when he was Gujarat chief minister, with folded hands before Thackeray.
Many said the banners hit back at the PM for condemning Sena’s protest that forced the cancellation of a concert by Pakistani singer Ghulam Ali in Mumbai.
The banners also contained photographs of senior BJP leaders such as Atal Bihari Vajpayee and LK Advani, and Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray and Congress leader Narayan Rane with Thackeray.
As photos of the posters went viral on social media, BJP leaders reacted with anger. “Many times as the big brother in the alliance, one tolerates such things. We tolerate it because we want to run the government. Shiv Sena was the big brother until 2014 Assembly polls and we got the bigger mandate,” said Girish Bapat, BJP leader and state minister.