NCP chief Sharad Pawar on Tuesday wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and slammed Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari after the latter wrote a scathing letter to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, questioning him regarding the reopening of temples in the state.
In the curt letter, Koshyari had mocked Uddhav and asked if he had "suddenly turned secular". He wrote, "I wonder if you are receiving any divine premonition to keep postponing the reopening of the places of worships time and again or have you suddenly turned 'secular' yourself, the term you hated?"
"It is ironic that while on one hand, the State government has permitted the opening of bars, restaurants and beaches, on the other hand, our Gods and Goddesses have been condemned to stay in the lockdown," Koshyari added.
Meanwhile, Sharad Pawar said the Governor can have his independent views and opinions on the issue. However, "I am shocked and surprised to know that the letter of the Governor was released to the media and also the kind of language used in the letter which does not behove well for a person who holds a constitutional position."
"I am sure you (PM Modi) too would have noticed the intemperate language that has been used. In the very Preamble of our Constitution the word ' Secular' is added that equates and shields all religions and hence the Chair of the Chief Minister must uphold such tenets of the Constitution. Unfortunately Hon. Governor's letter to the Chief Minister invokes the connotation as if written to the leader of a political party," wrote Pawar
"I firmly believe that in a democracy, free exchange of views between the Hon. Governor and the Hon. Chief Minister must take place. However, the tone and tenor used must always be in keeping with the stature of the constitutional post occupied by the individuals," he added.
Earlier in the day, CM Uddhav Thackeray gave a biting response to BS Koshyari. Responding to the letter, Uddhav said he does not need a “certificate” on Hindutva from the Governor. "As imposing lockdown all of a sudden was not right, revoking it completely at once will also be not a good thing. And yes, I am someone who follows Hindutva, my Hindutva doesn't need verification from you," Uddhav said. "My Hindutva does not permit me to welcome home a person who called my Maharashtra or Mumbai Pakistan occupied Kashmir," he added.