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Sunday, Aug 18, 2019

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray slams PM Modi for ‘centralising power’, demonetisation

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, who has been a staunch critic of demonetisation, said the move has not yielded anything positive.

mumbai Updated: Jul 23, 2017 23:06 IST
Swapnil Rawal
Swapnil Rawal
Hindustan Times
Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray
Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray(Kalpak Pathak/HT File Photo)

The Shiv Sena launched yet another scathing attack on its ally the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) through its mouthpiece Saamana on Sunday. In an interview to the newspaper, party chief Uddhav Thackeray attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi and accused him of ‘centralising’ power.

In a chat with Sena Member of Parliament and executive editor of Saamana Sanjay Raut, Thackeray attacked Modi over his style of functioning, demonetisation, Good and Services Tax (GST) and the PM’s poll pitch ‘acche din’. “The ‘acche din’ are only limited to government advertisement; the ground reality is completely different. Do we have true democracy in the country if all affairs are going to be run according to the wishes of the Prime Minister? He is centralising power, instead of decentralising it. He is taking away the independence of the states,” Thackeray said.

Thackeray, who has been a staunch critic of demonetisation, said the move has not yielded anything positive, instead, it has affected the livelihood of people. “Around 15 lakh people lost their jobs because of demonetisation. This means around 60 lakh people were directly affected. You should give them jobs now. How are you going to balance ‘Start-up India’, ‘Make in India’ programmes with such colossal job losses? ” Thackeray asked.

He also slammed the state government over the farm loan waiver. Thackeray said the government should table the list of 36 lakh farmers, who were going to get the benefit of the waiver in the upcoming Monsoon session. He said the party would continue its ‘dhol bajao andolan’ (protest by beating drums) to turn the heat on the government over implementing the loan waiver.

Interestingly, the Sena chief said he shares a cordial relationship with Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis. “There was no personal animosity between me and the current chief minister. My relation with him is really good. Often, he has accepted the suggestions I have given. He is putting forward views of his party, I am representing the people of the state. The difference is only that,” he said.

The two parties share an uncomfortable relationship ever since 2014 Assembly polls where they contested independently. Earlier in 2017, the BJP and the Sena parted ways for the Mumbai civic elections. Sena, which is the junior partner in the central and state governments, has never missed an opportunity to speak up against the BJP and the prime minister. Reiterating his stand, Thackeray said he and his party will continue to speak up whenever they disagree with the decision of the BJP in the state and at the Centre. “I want to explain my stand here. Whenever I say something or Sena speaks, we are considered anti-government. I am not anti-government. I am merely on the side of the people,” he said.

First Published: Jul 23, 2017 23:06 IST

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