Mumbai: Urging MNS party workers to resort to violence against outsiders, MNS chief Raj Thackeray on Wednesday recapitulated his anti-outsiders agenda to make a comeback after the drubbing in the Lok Sabha and Assembly. Taking up the issue of the ongoing 70,000 permit distribution for auto rickshaws, Thackeray warned that they should not be given to outsiders. He went on to ask his party members to burn auto rickshaws belonging to outsiders.
On the tenth anniversary of the party, Thackeray spoke to his party workers to boost their morale after a long gap. In a jam-packed Shanmukhananda auditorium at King’s Circle, Thackeray targeted the BJP government and also alleged corruption of Rs 1,190 crore in distributing the permits. “The government is going to issue 70,000 new rickshaw permits and all of them are to outsiders. It should have been given to Marathi youths...But I’ll tell you what to do. If you see new auto on the road, stop it, ask passenger to get down and burn it,” Thackeray said.
Dragging Shiv Sena into the issue, Thackeray lashed them for showing “false” affection towards Marathi people. Sena leader and transport minister Diwakar Raote had initiated the permit process recently. “A Shiv Sena minister is heading the (transport) department. But we feel real love for the Marathi people, unlike you (shiv sena). If you really have some feelings towards Marathi people, then the permits should have been given to them,” he said.
He pointed out that the new autos have been manufactured by Bajaj. “One auto costs Rs 1.7 lakh and 70,000 autos cost Rs 1,190 crore. In whose favour is the government working?…What is the difference between Congress and the BJP government? Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis will have to answer to me on this issue,” he said.
The MNS chief even criticised the high court judge for his remarks on making Marathi compulsory for the auto permit holders. One of the judges from the Nagpur division bench of Bombay high court had recently questioned the rule of compulsory Marathi for auto drivers to seek the permit.
“You are judges and this is my request to you to keep your respect intact. Do not get influenced by news channels and newspapers,” he said....