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MNS, Shiv Sena war heats up on social media

MNS says Sena not true to ideology of Bal Thackeray, Sena claims 2009 avenged

mumbai Updated: Oct 16, 2017 16:20 IST
Naresh Kamath
Naresh Kamath
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,MNS,Shiv Sena
The poster put up at Dadar.(HT)

From social media to posters – the defection of six Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) corporators to the Shiv Sena has started a war between the two parties in Mumbai.

The MNS was the first to strike with messages on Facebook and Twitter to “expose the Sena, which has deviated from the ideology of its founder the late Bal Thackeray”. The party has also released a video of Bal Thackeray, in which he abuses defectors in choicest language and orders his workers to bash up such traitors. “The MNS workers are angry over the backstabbing. Indulging in such dirty tricks does not suit the Thackeray family. This is against Balasaheb’s ideology,” said MNS leader Yeshwant Killedar.

The MNS workers also put up a hoarding near the Sena Bhavan, headquarters of Shiv Sena; and in Kala Nagar, Bandra, near Uddhav Thackeray’s residence. The hoarding states the MNS would have gifted all seven corporators for the cause of Maharashtrians, if the Sena had requested.

Rejoicing after the coup, the Shiv Sena responded with equal measure, by poking fun at the MNS and its chief. Various posts such as “2009 has been avenged” and “Uddhav, not Raj, is the rightful successor of Bal Thackeray’s legacy” have emerged online. In the 2009 Assembly polls, the MNS factor skewed the Sena’s tally, especially in Mumbai.

A post said Raj should accept that he does not have hold over his workers like Bal Thackeray. Another post said the defection of 2/3rd corporators indicated disillusionment among party workers.

“Both the parties are using their social media prowess to convey their stance to the masses using this platform. The 2014 parliamentary and Assembly elections showed the importance of social media,” said B Venkatesh Kumar, a political commentator, adding it has become a platform for political workers to express themselves.

The Sena got a boost, as the addition of MNS corporators will increase their strength in the BMC from 84 to 90 corporators. They also have the support of four independents. The BJP, meanwhile, has 82 corporators in the BMC, with support of two independent corporators.

First Published: Oct 16, 2017 16:19 IST