Allies Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena turned social networking site Twitter into a battlefield, as city BJP chief Ashish Shelar sent out a series of tweets directed at Yuva Sena chief Aaditya Thackeray, saying the party was indulging in “credit corruption.”
Shelar sent out 22 tweets in two hours, after Thackeray tweeted about his plans on developing an open space across six of the 22 acres near an MSRDC-owned plot at Bandra Reclamation. Ahead of the civic polls next year, the Sena and the BJP have been engaging in skirmishes. Tuesday’s war started when Thackeray, also the chairman of Mumbai Football District Association, tweeted announcing that he had, in his letter to MSRDC minister Eknath Shindre, proposed the park with a smaller one exclusively for pets, also be developed within the open space. Responding to Thackeray’s tweet, Shelar dubbed Thackeray “Yuvraj,” (crown prince’ ironically a term that has often been used to describe Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi by the BJP, and slammed him for the proposal.
“Football: I promoted football all along. Got action plan finalized. Paid deposit. Now @AUThackeray gets a post & wants credit! Come on! Cheap!” Shelar tweeted.
Shelar criticised the Sena’s rule of the BMC, where the two parties are partners in power for close to two decades, asking the Sena to disclose just how much per cent of the civic budget it had spent before trying to claim credit for projects.
The tweets escalated into a spat between Shelar and Sena’s online supporters. Shelar posted documents to show that he had received permissions and paid the deposit for the open space to be used as a football ground. The war took a comic turn when some Sena supporters pointed out that one of the letters Shelar tweeted was in fact, of the permission being denied to him by MHADA. Sena supporters said Shelar’s claims were lies, since the ground’s permissions only came through after Thackeray took over as MDFA chief in 2013.
Thackeray did not respond to Shelar’s tweets. He declined commenting when HT contacted him.
Shelar said, “I’ve said everything I have to. I’ve been working on this since 2011 and it isn’t fair that he (Thackeray) comes and steals credit.”