Thackeray family feud now out in the open

Mumbai, May 24: The Shiv Sena and the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena have both been electorally routed in Mumbai and in parts of Maharashtra in the recent General Elections, but this has not stopped the Thackeray family from bringing its internal bickering out into the open.

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray has blamed his cousin and MNS chief Raj Thackeray for the Shiv Sena’s poll debacle. But Raj has wasted no time in hitting back at Uddhav.

Raj Thackeray said: “I have a question for Uddhav Thackeray. You voted for Mahesh Jethmalani. Is he a Marathi? Do you think Marathis will benefit by voting for Mahesh Jethmalani?”.

The Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief said that MNS did not steal anybody’s votes.

He said while addressing his party workers here last Friday in the wake of the comments by Uddhav Thackeray’s comments that the votes of the “Marathi Manoos” had been taken away that due to presence of MNS, the votes were split in the recent elections.

“I have not stolen the votes of anybody, its the people who have supported us… Balasaheb Thackeray has all the right to say anything about me and I will not debate against him… I will also ask Uddhav Thackeray as to whom did he vote in this election. If it’s Mahesh Jethmalani, then is he a Marathi and if not then how can they allege that I have stolen the votes of Marathi?” said Raj Thackeray.

Stung by this direct attack, Uddhav raked up the Ramesh Kini’s murder case in which Raj was one of the accused.

Uddhav reminded Raj that Jethamalinis had helped him get acquitted and that too in the murder of a Marathi.

“You say I voted for a non-Marathi candidate like Mahesh Jethmalani but it was Jethmalani with whom Sena chief Bal Thackeray was in constant contact with, to acquit you in the murder case of Ramesh Kini, a Marathi,” Uddhav Thackeray added.

Sena chief Bal Thackeray has already declared that he’s broken all ties with his nephew Raj. And now the Thackeray cousins licking their electoral wounds are locked in a bitter verbal slugfest.

MNS, a splinter group of the Shiv Sena has played a spoilsport for the National Democratic Alliance in their strongholds Mumbai and Thane.

Out of its 12 nominees, three candidates of MNS had come up second while the remaining bagged the third spot in the election.

While Shiv Sena bagged 11 seats, the BJP managed just nine of the total 48 constituencies in Maharashtra.