Taking a dim view of the BJP-Congress slanging match, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday said that while both the sides claim they are not being allowed to speak in the Parliament, “people of the country” are clever enough to know “who is saying what”.
“On one hand, Rahul Gandhi says he is not being allowed to talk in Parliament while Narendra Modi too complains of not being allowed to speak. But people of this country are clever. They are watching who is saying what,” Thackeray said.
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Uddhav made the remarks aiming at the two national parties and the logjam in parliament after inducting some city-based leaders from Gujarati community into Shiv Sena, seen as a deft move ahead of the crucial civic elections in Mumbai.
He said that often in the past, there had been attempts by certain quarters to create and spread misunderstandings about Shiv Sena.
“Balasaheb always used to feel that the Gujarati community should walk along with the Shiv Sena. The Gujarati community has been consistently misused with a ‘use and throw’ attitude,” he said, adding the party will not make them stand in queues, unlike the BJP, in the wake of demonetisation.
NCP’s Hemraj Shah, a leader from the Bruhad Mumbai Gujarati Samaj from South Mumbai, Jayanti Modi from Malad, and Rajesh Doshi, deputy head of BJP’s Gujarati wing from Kandivali were among those who joined the Sena.
To a query on reports of raids by Income Tax and Enforcement Directorate at a Sena leader’s residence in the city and a seizure of over Rs one crore in both old and new notes, Thackeray said the party is investigating if the seized currency is similar to that of state Co-operation Minister Subhash Deshmukh.
According to reports, cash worth over Rs 91 lakh, belonging to Lokmangal Group associated with the minister was seized by flying squad of state Election Commission in Osmanabad, before the first phase of civic elections last month.
Deshmukh had then claimed that the amount was meant to be disbursed as wages to sugarcane workers attached to the Lokmangal group.