Soon, Samajwadi Party legislator Abu Asim Azmi may be able to respond to Maharashtra Navnirman Sena Chief Raj Thackeray’s verbal attacks in his own language.
Azmi, days after being beaten up for taking oath in Marathi and being felicitated by his party for ‘upholding the honour of Hindi’, has now decided to learn Marathi.
“I have hired a tutor,” Azmi said. The Samajwadi Party Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) from Mankhurd said it was necessary for an MLA from Maharashtra to know Marathi but insisted that he would speak in Hindi in the state Assembly.
“I respect Marathi. It is close to my heart but I will speak in Hindi as it is our national language and the Constitution gives me the right to speak in that language,” Azmi said.
Azmi, who returned from Lucknow after being felicitated, spoke a few lines in Marathi at Bhiwandi where he had gone to attend a party function. “Mazha jevan jahalay [I have had my lunch],” the Samajwadi Party leader told local reporters.
Azmi, who won from the assembly segments of Mankhurd and Bhiwandi, has vacated the Bhiwandi seat.
Azmi had to face the ire of the MNS for taking oath in Hindi in the Legislative Assembly on November 10.
Azmi further stoked the fire by attacking Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray saying he was ‘old and childish’.
During his felicitation in Lucknow on Tuesday, Azmi invited people to work in Maharashtra and Mumbai terming them as ‘mini-Uttar Pradesh’.