Following the barrage of criticism unleashed on Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi by Shiv Sena mouthpiece Saamana, party chief Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday convened a presser to clarify the matter.
Reiterating the Shiv Sena’s backing for Modi, Uddhav said the party daily was merely indulging in constructive criticism and had actually lauded Modi’s work, especially his efforts in Uttarakhand.
“Gujaratis are also Hindus, what Modi did for its citizens in Gujarat if Chief Ministers of the other states would have also done then it would have been good. Other Chief Ministers should learn from what Modi has achieved,” he said.
“This is not criticism, it is not due to any anger against him(Modi). We have nothing against him, it’s just that we have certain expectations from him. He belongs to us and hence we said that,” he said. And to show solidarity with Modi, Uddhav slammed the Congress criticism of Modi saying that it was very “cheap”.
The Sena Pramukh was, in fact, forced to hold the media briefing after the BJP leaders conveyed their strong displeasure over the anti-Modi campaign run by the Sena organ.
Uddhav said that the Sena was not opposing Modi just for the sake of opposing him and the constructive criticism was intended to bring about improvement in certain areas. He claimed that Modi was doing good work at the national level and others should also come forward to help the country.
The Saamana editorial had flayed Modi over his claim that he had rescued 15,000 Gujaratis in Uttarakhand. The editorial said that Modi’s bragging had proved counterproductive to the nation’s interests. According to the daily, it was detrimental to national interest that Modi was only thinking about people from his own state instead of the whole country at the time of such a national calamity.
Further, the editorial warned Modi’s PR managers to be careful in the future before taking credit for the work carried out by the BJP helmsman in times of national calamity.
What must have the hurt the ‘Modi brigade’ in the BJP the most was the Sena mouthpiece’s bid to compare him to Maharashtra CM Prithviraj Chavan, whose work according to the editorial was highly remarkable.