Fuming over a Bharatiya Janata Party legislator’s threat to ‘raze the Shiv Sena Bhavan’, the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA)’s saffron ally on Monday warned that the “BJP’s end is near” and those who cast an evil eye at the party headquarters, “will be found floating in the Worli gutters”.
A BJP MLC Prasad Lad raked up the row by commenting on the posse of police presence outside the Sena nerve-centre in south-central Dadar, and said, “if needed, the Sena Bhavan could be demolished”, sparking an ugly verbal spat with its former ally.
Though Lad apologised later and expressed regards for the Sena founder the late Balasaheb Thackeray, but as the controversy snowballed, Leader of Opposition Devendra Fadnavis quickly detached himself from the fracas, saying the BJP doesn’t believe in “the culture of destructive politics”.
Shiv Sena President and Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray himself launched a veiled “Dabangg” Sainik-style fighter attack on Sunday, saying they “are not scared of a slap” but those who dared to do it would be paid back in the same coin and in double measure.
While the divide between the two ex-allies just became deeper, the Sena scoffed at the BJP, saying “people who threaten the party are light-weight lowly ruffians, who simply just cannot digest the Sena Flag fluttering atop the Sena Bhavan”.
In sharp edits in the party newspapers, ‘Saamana’ and ‘Dopahar Ka Saamana’, the Sena said the “chindi-chors” (small-time crooks) who talk of attacking the Sena Bhavan are actually targeting the empire of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, and the ‘Marathi Pride’ of the ‘sons of the soil’, cemented by the Hindu HridaySamrat Balasaheb Thackeray.
It pointed out how the BJP was once a party of “loyal grassroots workers working for the Hindutva ideology, but now it is full of outsiders (defectors from other parties), who have sidelined the original activists to the dump yard — That is why this party (BJP)’s end is looming near…”
Lampooning the BJP, the Sena said during the post-Babri riots of 1992-1993, the Sena Bhavan was the true protector of the Hindus and Marathis who believe in Hindutva, while these “rioters of today were scared of Pakistan and wetting the mattress at home”.
The edit said that Shiv Sena represents justice, hope and aspirations, while the BJP was a traitor party which did not live up to its promise, but despite this, “today, Sena has become the ruling party in Maharashtra”.
Throwing the final gauntlet, the Sena said that those who showed the daring to reach the Sena Bhavan on their feet would not return likewise, “so they should ensure they come with a few who can carry them back on their shoulders”.