Twitter abuzz with praise for MNS chief

Aug 22, 2012, 08:03 IST | Priyankka Deshpande

Maharashtra Navnirman Sena Chief Raj Thackeray's speech at Azad Maidan in Mumbai yesterday, which revolved around a demand for Mumbai Police Commissioner Arup Patnaik and Home Minister RR Patil's resignations, not only mesmerized his party workers and the common men, but also garnered respect from celebrity circles.

Thackeray’s speech has given rise to a passionate discussion on micro-blogging site Twitter, where celebrities and individuals from other states have shared their views on the mature stand he has taken with the issue. 

Mass following: Raj Thackeray leads a rally at Marine Drive in Mumbai yesterday. Pic/Suresh KK

Socialite Shobha De tweeted, “Miracle at Azad Maidan! Raj Thackeray spoke soberly like a mature, seasoned politician, not a rabble-rouser. A model morcha and speech thus far.”  Thackeray, who otherwise has been mostly disliked or condemned in the Hindi-speaking belt, succeeded in winning the hearts of the non-Marathi people.  “Raj Thackeray spoke like a seasoned politician. His speech was not communal. It was provocative and bold,” tweeted Kuldeep Sharma from Delhi. 

Even those who never did profess a liking for the MNS chief were impressed enough to say that Raj was on a winning streak. Hiren Desai tweeted from Surat, “I’m not a fan of Thackeray, but when the government kept mum on the violence, there is need for people like Raj Thackeray.”

Murali from Chennai tweeted, “Looks like Raj Thackeray shook Mumbai.” Media and television personality Pritish Nandy tweeted, “I like the way Raj Thackeray has seized the initiative. Someone had to do so. These anti-socials are getting away with too much.”
Ashoke Pandit tweeted, “We salute Raj Thackeray for projecting the voice of those women constables who were molested at Azad Maidan and our government remained silent.”

Reacting on the overwhelming support Thackeray has received on various social networking sites, MNS state general secretary Anil Shidore said, “He has now entered into a serious orbit of politics. His speech yesterday was a clear-cut message to all party workers that the party has moved towards constructive politics.”

Reacting on BJP’s stand to welcome the MNSs’ decision of holding their protest at Azad Maidan, Shidore said, “We have been noticing for the last few months that BJP has been supporting us and we do not have any problem in taking BJP along with us.”

As many as 7,000 MNS workers participated in the rally and Shidore informed that a remarkable number of MNS workersseen at the rally were from tehsils like Purandar, Shirur, and Khed-Manchar. 

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