Mumbai: Shiv Sena executive president Uddhav Thackeray on Monday said his party will act as a responsible opposition, after facing a rout in the just-concluded Maharashtra Assembly Elections.
Addressing a press conference here, Uddhav said his party would support the pro-people programmes which the re-elected Congress-NCP government plans to undertake.
"The results were unexpected and I do not see people celebrating Congress` victory. However, Sena has not lost
anything. We worked for the people without keeping the polls in mind. We will continue working for the people," Uddhav said while accepting the Shiv Sena-BJP combine did not do well as expected in the polls.
Refuting any differences between the two parties, Uddhav said, “We will take all our allies with us.”
“We fought (the elections) together and will continue to do so,” he told the media, adding his party has been fighting for the people and will continue to do the same in the future.
"The Sena was fighting for people and there was no other interest. You (activists) should not waver but keep
working for the people," Uddhav further added.
The Shiv Sena heir further stated that their alliance was not based on numbers and added they will find out what led to the poll debacle.
Speaking about the party`s poor performance, Uddhav said
"Who else will take the moral responsibility? I am the executive president and I have to take the responsibility. But I am not a criminal and have not committed any crime. That is why I have the daring to approach the people."
Dismissing suggestions about his "failure" as a leader in two consecutive elections (Lok Sabha and Assembly), Uddhav countered, "who is raising the doubt? My activists who worked with me day and night never asked these questions and they have full faith in me," he said, adding Sena`s 44 candidates won this time compared to 56 in the 2004 Assembly polls.
Commenting on Sena supremo Bal Thackeray’s remarks that Marathi Manoos had stabbed him in the back, Uddhav said his father had the right to express himself.
"Balasaheb has done a lot for Marathi people and the relation between them is unbreakable. They (Marathi people)
would not get upset by the criticism," he said.
Asked if any major changes were expected in the party,
Uddhav said "changes keep happening where it is necessary".
He also refuted allegations that Shiv Sena’s election campaign was modelled in response to Raj Thackeray’s MNS.
Without naming the MNS, which damaged prospects of Sena-BJP alliance in 21 seats across the state, Uddhav said "two years back, there was a factor in Konkan (hinting at former Sena leader Narayan Rane who left the party) which is not there today. So, the factor (MNS) which is trying to damage us today will not be there in the future."
Uddhav said there was no conflict in Sena-BJP alliance on the issue of Leader of Opposition in the Assembly after a section of the BJP, which has got two more seats than the Sena this time, staked claim to the post held by Sena for the last 10 years.
"The issue would be discussed with BJP and a decision will be taken. The leader will be the one who would effectively raise the people`s voice in the House," he said.