Bharat bandh: Cause fuels MNS workers in protests, not who called it
Party chief Raj Thackeray had instructed his men to ensure it was successful; says who called for it was not important, the cause - rising fuel prices - is
The Maharashtra Navnirman Sena's (MNS) workers spent a busy day on Monday, supporting the Bharat Bandh. It was taken very seriously by the party chief Raj Thackeray, who it is learnt, personally called his 'go to' men on Sunday night, to instruct them to see that it was implemented well in their localities.
The Congress had called for the bandh, which was supported by many opposition parties including the NCP, to protest the rising price of fuel. The MNS chief, who had not contested elections against BJP candidates during the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, now wants a government free from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
An MNS worker gives a carrot to a passenger in a rickshaw during the bandh. Pics/Nimesh Dave
While Thackeray slammed the Shiv Sena by calling it a party with no stand, and thus, one which should not be given importance, he did not openly support the Congress. The bandh saw many rasta rokos where public transport was damaged, and the MNS contributed a lot to this.
A senior MNS leader said, "The chief wanted us to show our full strength, and it was because of us that the bandh was successful. We will not support the Congress directly as their relations with north Indians is something we have been fighting against for years."
Thackeray while addressing the media on Monday, said, "I am proud of my party workers because of whom the bandh was successful. Who called for the bandh is not important, what is important is the cause - increase in fuel prices. If the government claims that the rise in prices is not in their hands then why did they protest when they were in opposition?"
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