A week before the state goes to polls, the battle for Maharashtra is increasingly becoming Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP against all the others.
The poll rhetoric has been about the PM being partisan when it comes to his home state, Gujarat. The parties have accused Modi of insulting Maharashtra by comparing it to Gujarat.
Ironically, ally-turned-foe Shiv Sena and the MNS, which supported Modi for PM, have been most vocal on the Maharashtra versus Gujarat issue. “Modiji should realise he is the prime minister of India and not the chief minister of Gujarat. What message does Modi want to give the people,” asked MNS chief Raj Thackeray, at a rally in Mumbai on Sunday.
On Monday, he aimed a barb at the PM saying if he had to address more than 20 rallies for the Assembly polls, he would campaign for the BJP even in the municipal elections.
Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, who had been avoiding a direct attack on Modi, too has started targeting the PM.
While criticising Modi and the BJP on Monday, the Sena mouthpiece Saamana questioned the alleged move to get industrialists to shift base from Maharashtra to Gujarat.
Modi will return to campaign in Maharashtra on Tuesday. He will address 17 rallies, including one in Mumbai on October 9.