‘Autorickshaw overtakes Mercedes’: Eknath Shinde mocks Uddhav Thackeray

MumbaiHitting out at Uddhav Thackeray for accusing him of stabbing him in the back, Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Wednesday referred to his days as an autorickshaw driver and said “autorickshaws have now overtaken Mercedes”. . Speaking to news agency ANI, Shinde said the government led by him “is for the common people and is committed to give justice to all sections of the society.”

“The government will work in such a way that everyone feels that it is their government,” he said. “(Auto)rickshaw has overtaken Mercedes because this government is for common people, this is a government that gives justice to every section. We will perform in such a way that every constituent, everyone thinks this is my government. ‘It will work for me. That will be the difference,’ Shinde said.

Shinde was on Tuesday responding to a question on Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray’s remark in which he had said that the BJP used to call the MVA government the three wheeler government but now the three wheeler is running the government.

Importantly, Shiv Sena chief Thackeray has accused Shinde of stabbing him in the back. Shinde led a rebellion in the Shiv Sena, which eventually forced Uddhav Thackeray to resign as chief minister of the Maha Vikas Aghadi government on June 29, which also included the Congress and Shiv Sena.

Referring to the BJP’s support in forming the government, Shinde said the party has shown the people of the country that they are there not only for power but also for ideology.

“Everyone was speculating, there was a perception in the public that BJP does anything for power. But they have shown the nation that these 50 people have taken the position of Hindutva, an ideological position and their agenda is that of development and Hindutva. And they should be supported. Despite having more numbers, more MLAs, they supported us. They supported us for the chief minister’s post,” Shinde said.

Shinde said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi told him to take the state forward, lead towards development and take forward development works. The Chief Minister said that the Prime Minister assured full cooperation of him and the Center in the development efforts.

“It is a big deal. The Center is also with us. We have not done anything illegal. The pre-poll alliance was between BJP and Shiv Sena. We are tying up with that party.”

Asked about his remarks about his alliance winning 200 seats in the next assembly polls, Shinde said 170 MLAs are with the alliance and only 30 more are left. “We can get more than 200 seats. He said BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis has become the Deputy Chief Minister showing a “big heart”.

Shinde said it was unexpected for Fadnavis but he followed the instructions of the BJP. “It was unexpected for him, but he followed the instructions of the party. And karyakartas like me of Balasaheb and Anand Dighe were made chief ministers, I am grateful to PM Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP chief JP Nadda. They gave a Gave the opportunity and changed the perception that BJP is not only a part of power, but also of ideology.”

Responding to a question on cabinet formation, he said it would be discussed and a decision would be taken soon. Shinde said that he has conveyed to the Shiv Sena leadership several times that the party is not benefiting and incurring losses by being a part of the MVA government.

Shinde said all of them tried to get the leadership to change their decision to align with the Congress and the NCP, but were not successful.