Sena woos Marathi voter | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Sena woos Marathi voter

mumbai Updated: Sep 29, 2009 00:59 IST
Rajendra Aklekar

A ‘Translation Directorate’ to translate all literary works which are well known in the world into Marathi. A Marathi week. Government exams in Marathi and affordable housing for sons of the soil.

The Shiv Sena-Bharatiya Janata Party combine’s 24-page manifesto appeases the Marathi manoos. The allies of 20 years released their joint manifesto on Monday, on Dussehra, at Sena Bhavan, Dadar. The manifesto was released by Shiv Sena Executive President Uddhav Thackeray and senior BJP leaders Gopinath Munde and Nitin Gadkari.

Rattled by the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena’s (MNS) threat to its traditional Maharashtrian voter base, the saffron combine has included a nine-point agenda in its election manifesto.

If the saffron alliance comes to power, it promises to get 80 per cent of available jobs for locals. “The Shiv Sena was born for the welfare of Marathi manoos,” said Thackeray, dressed in a saffron kurta. “The electorate has realised that voting for MNS means voting for the Congress. The ground is slipping from beneath Raj Thackeray’s feet, that is why he is criticising us.”

Uddhav Thackeray said if voted to power, they would create a mechanism to stop influx of migrants. “The Shiv Sena-BJP, if voted to power, will provide a people-centric government and involve people in decision-making,” he said.

The manifesto promises free and compulsory education to all until SSC, 24x7 affordable power and stable prices of essential commodities.

Thackeray also announced that the allies would set up a state-of-the-art ‘Shiv Sampark Cell’ to keep the government informed of people's problems. “A separate ministry will be created to coordinate between government and people,” he said.

The manifesto promises to extend the Bandra-Nariman Point sealink to Versova and to expedite work on the Mumbai-Nashik eight-lane expressway. “All main cities in the state will be linked through expressways,” said Gadkari.

The Pradhan committee report on the 26/11 terror attacks — a document that the present government refused to table in the state legislature—will be made public, the allies said. “The Shiv Sena-BJP government will ensure action against the guilty,” Gadkari said.