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CM Shinde claims victory over rival UBT, challenges Thackeray’s Hindutva

Updated on: 20 June,2024 06:19 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Dharmendra Jore |

CM Shinde asserts dominance in post-election analysis, accuses UBT of relying on Congress votes, vows to secure future electoral wins

CM Shinde claims victory over rival UBT, challenges Thackeray’s Hindutva

Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde addressing the rally. Pics/Atul Kamble

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CM Shinde claims victory over rival UBT, challenges Thackeray’s Hindutva

Chief Minister and Shiv Sena chief Eknath Shinde said that the people have endorsed his party in the Lok Sabha elections as the original party against the rival UBT faction that won seats only because of the Congress votes, especially Muslims. 

He was addressing the rank and file at the party’s 58th foundation day on Wednesday night. He questioned Uddhav Thackeray’s Hindutva, asking the rival why he had stopped addressing the people as ‘my dear Hindu sisters and brothers’. Shinde dished out poll statistics that supported his claim of superiority over UBT. He read out booth-wise polling numbers in the Muslim-dominated areas of Mumbai where the Shinde Sena had polled in single digits while the UBT candidate had polled in many thousands.

Eknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena celebrate their foundation day on WednesdayEknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena celebrate their foundation day on Wednesday

“Those claiming Balasaheb’s (Thackeray) political inheritance are ashamed of calling themselves  Hindus. They don’t have the right to use Balasaheb’s name and photo. People have understood it and hence they have voted for us. Our mainstay voters have remained with us. We got 14 per cent out of 19 per cent. UBT has got the remaining votes while the rest (that helped it win) have come from others. On the other hand, we have retained all our strongholds like Thane, Kalyan, Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar,” he said while explaining how Muslim votes lost his party some seats in Mumbai despite the NDA getting over two lakh votes more than MVA. He administered an oath to the sainiks to win all the forthcoming elections, including Assembly elections.

Shinde said he still felt that his party could have won three more seats (it won 7). “We know the reasons but I won’t talk about it here because I’m most responsible as the CM to strengthen the Mahayuti,” he said as he called the MVA’s gain as a temporary swelling (of numbers). 

“People who said that Shinde will be finished have been maimed by the voters. Shinde will not get finished. He won because of the people who loved him. And he will continue to win in the future, too. I’m not scared of anything. I have done what others couldn’t dare,” he said, adding that the revolt he staged two years ago was endorsed by the voters and proved who is the best.

He wondered how someone (Thackeray) could say proudly that he had voted for the Congress that had taken away his father’s right to vote. “He has gone with the party that Balasaheb wanted to bury. I don’t know why his hands did not tremble while voting for the Congress,” he stated further, questioning the celebration by the Congress that had won only 99 seats. “Likewise the UBT is also celebrating despite losing 12 seats.”

Shinde slammed the Thackeray Sena for allegations of EVM hacking. “What kind of mobile phone and OTP they used to hack the EVM to get maximum votes (in some cases 99 per cent of the total polled)? Ravindra Waikar’s victory has hurt them most. They should understand that he has won on merit. I cannot stay calm while they are working to defeat him (post results),” he said.

Shinde said some rallies of the UBT were marked by the Pakistani flags. “Never before has the bhagva (saffron flag) been insulted like this. Show them their place in the Assembly polls,” he appealed to the party workers. “The accused of the Mumbai terror cases campaigned for them. Yakub Memon’s workers were there. They glorified Kasab (26/11 terrorist) by doubting the martyrdom of our brave police officers. They were seen with the people who celebrated Aurangzeb. We all know from where the fatwas were issued,” added the CM, saying that those claiming to be top notch in Worli will have to contest from Bhendi Bazar instead of his existing seat. 

The CM said Balasaheb Thackeray wasn’t against Muslims, but the Sena founder strongly despised Muslim appeasement. “Like Balasaheb, we too are not against Muslims. Just like our leader, we support patriot Muslims. Balasaheb used to say Hindus were Hindu’s rivals. It is time we took care of it. The trend is not good for Mumbai and the country,” he said while insisting that the government and party were for the welfare of the minorities, including Muslims.

Shinde lauded PM Narendra Modi for his return and challenged the opponents who had wished for his ouster. 

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