Marathi Manoos stabbed me in the back: Bal Thackeray

Upset over Sena`s loss, party chief Bal Thackeray said that Maharashtrians have stabbed him in the back.

Pune: Upset over Shiv Sena`s electoral
debacle in Maharashtra, party chief Bal Thackeray on Saturday said
it was not "outsiders" but Maharashtrians themselves who had
stabbed him in the back.

Quoting an English newspaper headline `MNS gives Cong
Raj a hand", (Raj Thackeray-led MNS helps Congress retain
power), the Sena chief said, "This sums it all".

Striking a cynical note in his first editorial in
party mouthpiece `Saamana` after the Assembly election results
on October 22, the 84-year-old Thackeray said, "There is an
evil spirit that is separating me from you (Marathi people)
and not allowing a meeting of minds".

"I do not have any hope that even this writing will
have any influence on your thinking. In fact, I have lost
faith in everything, including Maharashtrians and also God. I
am at great pains to make this statement but I have no desire
to hide the truth and indulge in self-deception," he said.

He wondered as to why the `Marathi Manoos`, who turns
to Shiv Sena to serve his interests in all walks of life,
failed to vote for the organisation born for him.

The Sena, which ruled the state in alliance with BJP
from 1995 to 1999, finished fourth, winning just 44 of the 169
seats it contested. BJP bagged 46 seats. Maharashtra Navnirman
Sena, led by Thackeray`s estranged nephew Raj, severely dented
the Sena`s traditional Marathi vote base.

Citing success of regional parties of Jayalalithaa and
M Karunanidhi in Tamil Nadu, and Narendra Modi, who appealed
to the Gujarati "pride" besides Naveen Patnaik in Orissa,
Thackeray said, "It seems that Marathi people still have not
got wiser and their minds are dead."

"I have given vent to my feelings to relieve my
anguish. I devoted 44 years of my life for you. I do not know
what crime I have committed and where I have gone wrong. If
the dead minds of Maharashtrians are not going to be
resurrected, I should not subject myself to this agony," the
Sena patriarch added.

Bureau Report