Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut recently appeared to have said that Balasaheb Thackeray’s opinions from the 90s are of no use today. He made these remarks while speaking in an interview with TV9 Marathi on 18th April 2022. He made this statement when asked questions about Shiv Sena’s Hindutva issue being hijacked by Raj Thackeray’s Maharashtra Navnirman Sena.
While reacting to a question regarding Raj Thackeray’s recent stance against the loudspeakers mounted on the mosques, Sanjay Raut said Balasaheb Thackeray first raised this issue. Raut further said that the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena need not preach wisdom to Shiv Sena and the Maha Vikas Aghadi government. When he made such a claim, then the TV9 Marathi anchor showed him a clip of Balasaheb Thackeray’s speech that he gave in 1994.
In this speech, Balasaheb Thackeray had said, “I will tell Sarpotdar that one of your cases is still pending in the court. And that is the case regarding the loudspeakers in the mosques. When these loudspeakers will be taken down? The Kolkata High Court has ruled that first take these loudspeakers down. More dangerous news followed when these loudspeakers were being taken down. I must tell that news for the reporters and journalists to know. This government in our Maharashtra state… It has done its own circumcision and issued a Fatwa. The Fatwa of this government asks what could be the possible number if the government decides to give pensions to all the Imams in the mosques. And listen carefully, Imams in the mosques and not the priests in the temples. So they have asked this question to the Charity Commissioner through the Fatwa. This government has asked the Charity Commissioner to give the total count of the Imams in the mosques and how much budget will be needed to pay them their pensions. Does Sharad Pawar have any iota of shame left with him? So what you are waiting for. This time finish off the Congress party from the political spectrum of Maharashtra.”
Replying to this, Sanjay Raut said, “Don’t show me this video. I have worked for a long time with him. Showing a byte of Balasaheb Thackeray from the year 1994 or 1990 is meaningless and useless today.” When crossed by the anchor he further said, “Don’t show me any of his bytes. I have worked with him for 35 years.”
As Raj Thackeray has picked up the Azaan row and gave the ultimatum of 3rd May 2022 to the state government to remove the loudspeakers from the mosques, Shiv Sena is being questioned on its stand on the issue.
However, the Shiv Sena, currently in an alliance with Sharad Pawar’s NCP and Congress, is far from the political ideals founded by Balasaheb Thackeray.