Unfortunate that Shiv Sena nurtured BJP for 25 years: Uddhav Thackeray
Maharashtra chief minister and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday said he believes that the Sena wasted 25 years in alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), and accused his former partner of using Hindutva for its political convenience, adding that the Sena never used it to gain power.
Responding to BJP’s jibes that Sena had abandoned Hindutva for power, Thackeray said: “Today, the hollow Hindutva they display is nothing but a charade for power. It is unfortunate that we nurtured them for 25 years... We did not leave Hindutva and will never do so. We left BJP and not Hindutva. BJP is not synonymous with Hindutva... We wanted power for Hindutva. We did not use Hindutva to get power.”
The chief minister was speaking during his virtual address to Shiv Sainiks on the 96th birth anniversary of the party founder and his father Bal Thackeray when he made the remarks.
Thackeray’s party fell out with BJP after the 2019 Maharashtra elections and tied up with Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Congress to form the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government.
“We supported the BJP wholeheartedly to enable them to fulfill their national ambitions. The understanding was they will go national while we will lead in Maharashtra. But we were betrayed and attempts were made to destroy us in our home. So we had to hit back,” Thackeray said. He also accused the saffron party of using and dumping its allies as per its political convenience.
BJP leader Atul Bhatkhalkar said: “Thackeray’s speech was full of hatred for the BJP and loaded with contradictory statements. If he thinks they rotted in the alliance with us for 25 years, why were they not able to perform in the recent local body elections?”