MNS chief Raj Thackeray has backed Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi's bid to become Prime Minister, but his party has objected to a Gujarati newspaper advertisement on BEST buses, saying that it has "ignored" the contribution of Marathi people towards Mumbai's development.
Alleging that the advertisement issued by the Gujarati language newspaper called 'Sandesh', highlighted only efforts made by Gujaratis and "ignored" the contribution made by Marathi people towards Mumbai's development, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) corporator Sandeep Deshpande demanded removal of the advertisement here today.
"The Gujarati language newspaper advertisement speaks only about the contribution made by Gujaratis towards Mumbai's development but ignores similar efforts made by the Marathi people. Is it true that Gujaratis alone contributed towards Mumbai's growth? Aren't Marathi speakers involved in the development of the city? Why has the contribution made by the Marathi people not been mentioned (in the advertisement)," Deshpande asked.
However, Congress corporator Pravin Chheda promptly rejected the MNS claim, saying that the advertisement had no such content.
Reacting to the issue, Shiv Sena member and BEST committee chairman Arun Dudhwadkar said, "We will examine the advertisement and if anything objectionable is found, we will remove it. We have to remove such advertisements if they create tensions between the two communities."
The development comes after a recent editorial in the Shiv Sena's Marathi daily newspaper 'Saamna', criticised Gujaratis, and had prompted Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray to issue a clarification, as well as his son Aaditya Thackeray to say, that the Shiv Sena did not share the thoughts expressed in the editorial published by its mouthpiece.