Latur: A little ‘bromance’ – which the FPJ lexicon says is a close but non-sexual relationship between two men — was on display between PM Narendra Modi and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray in Latur on Tuesday. They stepped on to the stage, walking hand-in-hand, at a joint rally held by both parties. Then, in a show of solidarity, Modi, Uddhav and Devendra Fadnavis raised their hands, shouting slogans for ‘Maha Yuti’.
Speaking in Marathi, Modi began by introducing the Shiv Sena president saying, “Sena chief and my younger brother, Uddhav Thackeray.” He further drew inspiration from the name of Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj and sought the blessings of Siddheshwar Maharaj in his speech.This issue of ‘big brother’ is not new to the two allies.
But the founder of the Sena, the late Balasaheb, had always said that Sena was the big brother in the alliance. Later, this was distorted to convey that Sena is the big brother in the State and the BJP at the Centre. Sanjay Raut, Sena member of Parliament, prior to formation of the alliance had said, “The elder brother is always the older one.”
After this, Modi has now referred to Uddhav as the younger brother, causing a flurry of whispers. Modi also reminded the people of Latur that the Congress government had denied senior Thackeray his right to vote. “The Congress party had confiscated citizenship of (Bal) Thackeray and denied him voting rights,” reminded Modi.
PM Modi on Tuesday also made a passionate appeal to the millennial generation exhorting them to select the nation above everything else while exercising their first-ever vote in the 2019 elections. He also said that every vote that is cast for the Bharatiya Janata Party would “come directly to me…”
Sharing the dais for the first time in 28 months with Uddhav Thackeray, Modi assured that he would not let the aspirations of the people in backward Marathwada region go in vain and would take up developmental activities and ensure their faith is not belied. Reiterating that the Congress and its allies were working against the country, he said: “They are after me…
They are abusing me. They allege that we did not shoot down any Pakistan fighter plane, believing some report from somewhere and exploiting it to spread canards. How many proofs will you demand from the Indian Army and the Indian Air Force?””This is the time to punish these people who have compromised on national security for electoral politics…
They should be made to lose their (election) deposits… I have stopped all their dirty games and now all our decisions are only in national interest,” Modi told the gathering. Taunting Congress President Rahul Gandhi on the party manifesto, Fadnavis said that “when your great grandfather and grandmother could not eliminate poverty, how will you do it”.