Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray has hit out at Team Anna members and their anti-corruption movement, calling them double-faced. In an interview published in the Shiv Sena mouthpiece Saamna on Sunday, Thackeray called them brainless and jobless, and roundly criticised Hazare’s ‘five-star’ fast.
“If there was so much power in their anti-corruption protests against the Congress then how did they still win the state council elections….They wear ‘I am Anna’ caps and below it they are brainless,” Thackeray said. This is the first of a three-part interview to be carried by Saamna ahead of Thackeray’s 86th birthday on January 23.
Calling Team Anna members including Kiran Bedi, Arvind Kejriwal and Manish Sisodia “jobless”, Thackeray said their real motives are being exposed. “The court has slammed Shanti Bhushan for cheating the government. Prior to that, Kiran Bedi’s case was brought out. They all are tainted…” he said.
Thackeray said Hazare needs to explain the source of income for his ‘five-star fasts’. “This is a corporate style of fasts where foreigners pour their funds in. These are people who are watching out for their interest,” he said. Thackeray questioned Hazare’s credentials for talking against corruption after accepting such “black money”. He also questioned the need for a lokpal bill. “It will end up in inquiries, committees and more committees. Also, there is a huge discrepancy over the law,” he said.
When asked why Hazare’s Mumbai fast got a poor response in comparison to the one at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar, he said it was because the fast was ‘overblown’. “People need to know the truth, and that is they lost their hold,” he said.
'Congress has spoilt the country'
Criticising the Congress, Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray said it has ‘spoilt’ the country. “What kind of a country is this, where the army chief has to go to court over the issue of his age?,” he said. He jumped on to Congress chief Sonia Gandhi’s foreign origin saying, “How can this insult her? She is a foreigner.” He said that the chair Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi is aspiring for (prime minister) is not saleable. Reacting to his remarks, Sachin Sawant, spokesperson, Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee, said: “The people of India will decide whether Rahulji can become India’s prime minister or not.”