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Home > Mumbai > Mumbai News > Article > Lok Sabha elections 2024 Raj Thackeray and Sushma Andhare clash over missing letter controversy

Lok Sabha elections 2024: Raj Thackeray and Sushma Andhare clash over missing letter controversy

Updated on: 15 May,2024 07:23 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Dipti Singh | dipti.singh@mid-day.com

Ongoing war of words between MNS chief Raj Thackeray and Sena (UBT) leader Sushma Andhare intensifies as allegations fly over a missing letter purportedly addressed to PM Narendra Modi

Lok Sabha elections 2024: Raj Thackeray and Sushma Andhare clash over missing letter controversy

Sushma Andhare at a rally in Thane last year. Pic/Satej Shinde

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The war of words between MNS chief Raj Thackeray and Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Sushma Andhare escalates as both exchange barbs during political rallies, dredging and raking up old issues to discredit each other. Adding another layer to the feud, Andhare unveiled an RTI reply asserting that the letter Raj purportedly sent to PM Narendra Modi on May 31, 2023, supporting protesting wrestlers and criticising BJP MP Brij Bhushan Singh, never reached the PMO despite going viral on social media.


Since the RTI reply from the PM’s office stated that they have not received such a letter dated May 31, 2023, the matter has become a bone of contention. Opposition leaders, especially Andhare’s supporters, are taunting Thackeray on various social media platforms, asking where the letter went missing or if it was a ploy to mislead citizens.


Two days ago, Raj spoke at a rally in Kalwa to campaign for the Mahayuti and Shiv Sena (Eknath Shinde) candidates from Thane, Naresh Mhaske, and from Kalyan, Dr Shrikant Shinde. During this rally, he strongly criticised the Thackeray faction of the Shiv Sena. He also targeted Shiv Sena (UBT) leader and spokesperson Andhare by showcasing an old video of her where she is seen commenting about giving the party’s reins to an old man (hinting at Balasaheb Thackeray), bringing back his infamous “laav toh video” moment. In response, Andhare posted on social media and later criticised Raj in a public meeting at Anushakti Nagar.


“Who spoke of stopping Brij Bhushan Singh? Which party does Brij Bhushan belong to? Whose campaign are you supporting today? Isn’t this ideological confusion?” Andhare said, adding, “I stand with Uddhav Thackeray. As a sister, I am fighting for him. But you are fighting against your own brother,” making a sharp attack on Raj.

Talking about the issue further, Andhare told mid-day on Tuesday, “The RTI reply is proof; there is no need to say anything further. They made the letter viral on social media, it is addressed to PM Modi, then why is the PMO saying the letter was not received? Where did the letter go? Did they forget to send it? Then how come it was posted on social media?” Andhare asked sarcastically.

“They have all got together to corner me by all means—people like Raj Thackeray, Chitra Wagh, Shalini Thackeray, and Neelam Gorhe. In my political career, I have no misdeeds, no ED cases, nothing that they can show against me. Hence, they are body-shaming me by calling me ‘Butki’ (short), ‘Kaali’ (dark-skinned), etc., trying to corner me. But all these things do not bother me. And now they have come out with a new ploy by showing a 27-year-old video to the public to mislead them. I have not denied it’s me, nor am I denying what I said. However, it was a debate session, and I was part of that debate not as a politician but as an individual and as a student. I am not scared of these people. This Raj Thackeray, who himself is campaigning for people who have mocked him and said the worst things about our Balasaheb—has he not heard these things?” Andhare added.

Criticising Raj further, Andhare said, “He is a pro-establishment person. Today, he is with BJP, leaving behind dignity. Tomorrow, if Rahul Gandhi and Uddhav Saheb come to power, he will criticise the BJP and join the ruling party. He cannot handle being in Opposition. We are not like him. Even if we are in Opposition, we will not leave our ideology and loyalty.”

Following Andhare’s verbal attack, MNS cadre too has started lashing out at her. MNS leader Shalini Thackeray took to X and wrote: “Since Raj Thackeray saheb showed Sushma Andhare’s video, she has become highly agitated and excited. She continues to speak out and elevate herself by disrespecting Balasaheb. However, she should remember that a true Hindu and a staunch follower of Balasaheb will never forgive her. This sentiment has been underscored by the Warkari community in Maharashtra, who have taken an oath to this effect.”

May 31
Day in 2023, Raj wrote a letter to Modi

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