It is "gaumutra Hindutva" versus Opposition solidarity

Maharashtra leads the way with Vajramuth rally on RSS home turf. MVA leaders avow that their joint front would “finish off” the BJP in the coming elections

Vajramuth Rally (Source: Twitter)
Vajramuth Rally (Source: Twitter)

Santoshee Gulabkali Mishra

Amid speculation that the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) was breaking up, the Opposition on Sunday took on the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh on its own home turf of Nagpur and staged a strong show of solidarity Amid allegations that the ruling government had tried hard to prevent the gathering.

Shiv Sena (UBT) leader and former Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray along with the senior NCP leader Ajit Pawar, who is rumoured to be keen on joining the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance, attended the rally. Pawar did not address the crowds, though, as it was decided different leaders would address gatherings in different cities and he had already spoken at the Aurangabad (Sambhajinagar) rally the previous week.

While Ajit, off the stage, mocked those spearheading rumours that he was quitting the MVA and had met union home minister Amit Shah in New Delhi last week, Uddhav Thackeray gave a new spin to the RSS brand of Hindutva, describing it as "gaumutrawadi", amid recent scientifuc research reports that cow urine is dangerous for human consumption. "They should drink that gaumutra instead of wasting it on the places I have stepped on," he said in a sharp comment on the BJP having sprinkled gaumutra on the MVA rally venue in Aurangabad (Sambhajinagar) last week to purify it against contamination by the opposition. 

The state Congress chief Nana Patole, former chief minister and senior Congress leader, Prithviraj Chavan, state NCP chief Jayant Patil, former state home minister, Anil Deshmukh and senior Congress leaders, Sunil Kedar and Vijay Wadetiwar, who spoke on the occasion, all emphasized the dire need to safeguard the Constitution and the freedom of the nation and its people.

The MVA came down heavily on the Narendra Modi-led government at the Centre over the issue of remarks on Pulwama terror attack made by former Jammu & Kashmir Governor Satyapal Malik and Hindenburg Research’s report on Adani Group. "Vote for anybody but this govern entm" was the refrain at the rally.

Sena Chief Thackeray attacked the Modi government over the Adani issue alleging that businessmen, close to the ruling party, were getting richer. "As claimed by the BJP, if the Hindenburg report was indeed an attack on the country  then the country has the right to get an answer from the government as to why that was so. It is so strange that when Rahul Gandhi questioned Adani's finances, he was disqualified and hounded. There is now a possibility that Arvind Kejriwal will also be thrown in jail.”

Thackeray accused the BJP for falsely taking credit for the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya and belittling the contribution of late Sena founder Bal Thackeray and Shiv Sainiks, in the Babri mosque demolition.

“They [the BJP] keep accusing me of having forsaken Hindutva because I have allied with the Congress. Are there no Hindus in the Congress? Their (BJP-RSS) Hindutva is only based on Gaumutra (cow urine),” said Thackeray, attacking the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). He also added that Mohan Bhagwat too, had visited a mosque. But what if he ( Thackeray)  had visited a mosque? “They [BJP] would have swiftly accused me of having left Hindutva…It was the BJP who had first broken our alliance in 2014, and not us,” said Thackeray.

Congress State chief  Patole said, “The ruling parties had tried their best to prevent the MVA from holding the Nagpur rally.”

The MVA's next solidarity show will be in Mumbai on May 1, which is Maharashtra Day. The BJP and Eknath Shinde Shiv Sena also plans a rally in Mumbai on the same day, bringing to mind the show of strength between Shinde and Thackeray during 5he traditional Sena Dassehra rally last year.

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