Updated: June 27, 2022 10:48:21 am
Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut’s fresh salvo at the rebel party MLAs camping at a Guwahati hotel, on Sunday, calling them living corpses who would be sent to a mortuary for post-mortem on their return from the Assam capital, received flak from the Opposition and the Eknath Shinde camp, which termed it as a death threat to the rebels.
“When they step out of Assam, they won’t be alive at heart. They know what can happen in the fire which has been lit here now. The dead bodies of all these 40 MLAs will come to Mumbai (from Guwahati), we will directly send them to the mortuary for post-mortem,” Raut said at a rally of Shiv Sena workers in Dahisar on Sunday.
Calling the rebels buffaloes, the Sena MP said, “There is a temple in Guwahati where buffaloes are sacrificed. These 40 buffaloes have gone there to be sacrificed.”
Deepak Kesarkar, the spokesperson for the rebel Shinde Camp objected to Raut’s choice of language and his statement that the MLAs have many fathers, saying that “there is too much outrage in the rebels”.
“He is insulting women in our families and it won’t be tolerated. He is saying anything he wants and damaging the party. No party should have a spokesperson like Sanjay Raut. He is on a mission to finish the party. It is because of his statements that all the MLAs are angry and more are joining us,” Kesarkar said.
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“He has called us corpses. He should remember that it was on our votes that he became an MP earlier this month. He has also called us animals. If we are animals and corpses then he should have some self-esteem and resign as MP. He should contest the polls afresh. He needs votes of only 41 MLAs, let’s see from where he gets it. It’s said that a Rajya Sabha member is speaking like this. He is the chief spokesperson of Shiv Sena. We are very much part of the Sena. On what basis are we being targeted by the Sena? We are challenging the decisions to disqualify our members and leader Eknath Shinde,” he added.
He said that the rebel camp currently has 39 Sena MLAs and 12 Independents on its side and if Raut continues to speak like this, more will join in the coming days.
Bharat Gogawale, the chief whip of the Shinde camp said, “Party members are joining us as they are upset with Raut’s statements and language. The more he speaks, the more will be the members joining us. He is damaging our party.”
The BJP, too, came down heavily on the Sena MP on social media, claiming that it was a threat to kill the rebel MLAs once they return to Mumbai.
Facing a backlash over his remark, Raut issued a clarification later in the day, saying that his statement should not be taken in its literal sense as what he meant was that the rebel MLAs have lost their souls after betraying the party and are living corpses whose post-mortem will be conducted at Vidhan Bhavan (during a floor test).
“There is nothing controversial in my statement. One must understand my speech. What I said is that those MLAs who are in Guwahati are like living corpses, their souls are dead. What is a body worth when the soul is dead? These living corpses will come to Mumbai and we will send them to Vidhan Bhavan for post-mortem. This is what I said. What is wrong in it?” Raut said.
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