Mumbai : Attacking the opposition BJP that used to ridicule the Maha-Vikas-Aghadi government as a “three-wheeler autorickshaw,” the chief minister Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday said that there are actually four wheels – which political opponents failed to notice.
The opposition leader, Devendra Fadnavis and other senior BJP leaders, like Chandrakant Patil often describe the Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress government as a “three-wheeler autorickshaw” or “three-wheeler vehicle”. Without naming the BJP, the chief minister Thackeray said, “We are often described as three-wheeler vehicle…but let me tell you…we do not have three wheels but actually four….the fourth being the faith of the people….this is a ‘rath’ of ‘janata’ with four wheels,” Thackeray said in presence of NCP chief Sharad Pawar, who is the architect of the MVA dispensation that prevented BJP from returning to power in Maharashtra in 2019.
Lashing out at the BJP, the chief minister Thackeray said that the opposition even played politics during the natural calamities. “It was unfortunate,” he said and warned the saffron party that the MVA partners Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress will effectively tackle any political crisis in the state. Although Thackeray did not name BJP directly and mentioned about the latter’s move to issue new deadlines for the collapse of the MVA government, Thackeray sent out a strong message to its estranged ally that he was prepared for any fight and foil an attempt to destabilise or topple the government.
On the other hand, NCP chief Sharad Pawar also slammed BJP for its projections for the collapse of the MVA government as the former has yet to digest the loss of power in Maharashtra. Pawar said the growing restless in BJP because of its inability to retain power can be understood but announced that the government will not just complete five-year term but will continue to rule in future too due to the people’s support.
Pawar asserted that there is no doubt that the government will run for 5 years but now lay the foundation for 25 years. Thackeray further said that there is “total coordination” among the three parties and its smaller allies. “Pawar saheb guides us regularly ….Sonia Gandhi speaks to me over the phone on a regular basis,” he said.
Referring to the BJP charge and criticism that he works from home, he said, “There is absolute teamwork…everyone knows what has to be done…my colleagues move around….I also admire Pawar saheb…he regularly moves across the state.” In a lighter vein, he said, “I need not have to tap the phones of others…..anyway the Home department is not with me…but on a serious note…we have mutual faith and respect for each other. Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and state Congress President and Revenue Minister also spoke on the occasion.
Both Thackeray and Pawar were speaking at the function organised here to release a special booklet published by the Directorate General of Information and Public Relations on the occasion of completion of one year rule of the MVA government. Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar also took a dig at BJP predicting the MVA government’s failure saying that the government under Thackeray’s leadership was strong and stable.