Sharing a dais for the first time after 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Uddhav Thackeray arrived on stage holding each other’s hand. Mr Thackeray, who has been criticising Mr Modi and his government for the past four-and-a-half years, attacked the Congress for its promise to eradicate poverty. He asked why the Congress could not eradicate poverty when it was in power for 60 years.
Referring to Congress president Rahul Gandhi, Mr Thackeray said that since the time of his grandmother, the slogan of ‘garibi hatao’ had been given. While the Gandhi clan’s poverty had been eradicated, when would the people’s poverty be done away with, he questioned.
He targeted the Congress-led government under the leadership of P.V. Narasimha Rao over terrorism. “The previous government bowed down before terrorists but the current government did not. Whenever Pakistan did any mischief, the present regime gave a befitting reply, be it a surgical strike in Uri or air strike in Balakot,” he said.
Addressing a joint election rally of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena at Ausa in Latur district, the Sena chief said that “But I want to appeal Mr Modi to attack Pakistan in su-ch a manner that it’s existence is wiped out. It is desire of the country and countrymen,” he said.
Thanking the PM, the Sena chief said that the party was happy over the BJP manifesto covering topics such as the Ram Mandir, removal of Article 370 and special focus on the farmers. He said that the promises made in the BJP manifesto were the reason due to which the Sena alliedwith the party for these elections.
Addressing the rally Mr Thackeray asked what kind of government would they prefer. “Do you want a government that hangs terrorists or the one which makes them sit on the lap and drink milk? If you want the former, only Narendra Modi can give you such a government,” he said.
Mr Thackeray requested the PM to stand firmly with Marathwada as the region was reeling under drought.