Mumbai: Even as back channel talks over power sharing were on between BJP and Shiv Sena, the latter, in an apparent attempt to mend ties with its former ally ahead of government formation in Maharashtra, praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for hosting a Diwali tea party for NDA allies.
The Sena had yesterday spoken openly in favor of a BJP-led coalition government for the first time and today it showered praises on Modi for changing the cultural face of the country.
"Prime Minister Modi has changed the cultural face of India after coming to power. This is commendable. Until yesterday only Iftar parties were being held by leaders during the Eid festival, today Diwali is being celebrated as well.
This is an important change," the Sena said in an editorial in its mouthpiece 'Saamana'. Notably, the editorial is in stark contrast to an article published in 'Saamana' earlier this month, when the Sena had accused the BJP of not recognizing the party (Sena) after winning the state Assembly elections.
However, softening its stand, the Sena had yesterday said, "If Shiv Sena and BJP come together to form a government it will be stable. Our ties with BJP are very old. Whatever happened during the elections we have forgotten." The party today praised the Prime Minister saying that, "Modi used the occasion (the high tea organized for NDA MPs on Sunday) to put forward his schemes for the development of the poor.
He asked all the MPs to work for the benefit of common man. Whatever he said was true." "Lakhs of crores have been spent on development schemes,but nothing substantial has been done by the previous governments in the last 50 years. The new government should now find out where did all that money go and whom did it benefit," the editorial stated.
Shiv Sena alleged that the Congress government indulged in Iftar parties only to appease the minority community to use it for vote bank politics. "The Congress used to celebrate Eid as if it was a national festival. That was less of love for the Muslims and more of vote bank and appeasement politics. The era of vote bank politics has ended now and Modi will change the face of the culture of this country," it said.