Maharashtra Lok Sabha Elections 2024: MNS Chief Raj Thackeray Extends 'Unconditional Support' To PM Modi, Boosts BJP And Maha Yuti Alliance

Maharashtra Lok Sabha Elections 2024: MNS Chief Raj Thackeray Extends 'Unconditional Support' To PM Modi, Boosts BJP And Maha Yuti Alliance

Raj Thackeray said he was extending support to PM Modi `'unconditionally' in the upcoming elections

S BalakrishnanUpdated: Wednesday, April 10, 2024, 02:32 AM IST
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MNS Chief Raj Thackeray | PTI

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the ruling Maha Yuti alliance received a major boost on Tuesday with Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray extending support to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Addressing a mammoth rally at the historic Shivaji Park in Dadar, he said the upcoming elections were very critical for the future of the nation and there is need for a strong leadership during this crucial period and this can be provided only by Modi. He said he was extending support to Modi ``unconditionally." ``I have not asked for any seat in Parliament or state legislature," he added.

Impact Of Thackeray's Support On Mahayuti And BJP's Electoral Prospects

The BJP managed to get a commitment of support  from Thackeray during his recent meeting with senior party leader and Union home minister Amit Shah in New Delhi.  Thackeray has great crowd-pulling capacity as was demonstrated yet again on Tuesday. But he has not been able to convert his popularity into votes. The MNS remained an `also ran'  in most elections so much so that the Maha Yuti did not offer it even one seat for the parliamentary polls.

But his support will give a psychological boost to the Mahayuti in general and the BJP in particular and also fetch incremental votes of Marathi ``manoos." However, north Indian votes may drift away from the BJP since MNS workers had assaulted several job-seekers from the north a few years ago at Kalyan, Nashik and other stations. 

Raj Thackeray's History With PM Modi And MNS

Thackeray pointed out that before the 2014 Lok Sabha elections he had suggested Modi's name for Prime Minister ship. He did this after a tour of Gujarat when Modi was its chief minister. 

After his meeting with Amit Shah there was speculation that the MNS might merge with the Shiv Sena (Shinde). Thackeray denied the reports.  ``I have worked only under Bal Thackeray and will work under no one else," he said. He also denied that he had taken part in seat-sharing talks with the Maha Yuti.

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