Mumbai: Apparently eyeing a larger role in Maharashtra politics, Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) is now making attempts to shed its “anti-North Indian” image by reaching out to the community, which accounts for sizeable number of voters in the State.

“MNS was never against North Indians. “North Indians have lot of misunderstanding about our party spread by media by twisting Raj’s statements. He has entrusted me the task of initiating a dialogue among the community members in Mumbai and clear the misconception and explain the MNS chief’s development agenda for Maharashtra,” Vageesh Saraswat, a journalist-turned politician and a key aide of Raj, told newsmen.

The toning down of MNS stand on North Indians was evident last month when the party invited megastar Amitabh Bachchan for an event organised for cine artistes’ welfare.

“It was not about toning down of anti-North India rhetoric. Bachchan began his speech in Marathi. He has considered Maharashtra as his ‘karmbhoomi’. We were never against Bachchan. Criticism about the legendary actor was issue-based.

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