Mumbai: The Balasahebanchi Shiv Sena party, on Thursday, said that the state government has conveyed to Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari to be cautious while talking about Chhatrapati Shivaji.
The development came a day after Shiv Sena (UBT) chief Uddhav Thackeray threatened to conduct protests against the governor over the alleged “insult of the Maratha king.”
Senior BSS leader and state education minister Deepak Kesarkar also indicated that his party won’t seek Koshyari’s ouster.
“Shivaji is our pride. The state government has taken a stand that the governor should be cautious while speaking about him so that he doesn’t get insulted,” said Kesari.
He added that both the chief minister and deputy chief minister have conveyed the message to him.
“He (governor) has also been called to Delhi and I am sure he will be instructed about the same there as well,” Kesari said.
Earlier this week, Koshyari had said that Shivaji was a past idol and now the state has new idols from BR Ambedkar to Nitin Gadkari. It evoked strong reactions from opposition parties, Maratha outfits and even descendants of the king.
The BJP, however, defended Koshyari and said that he did not mean to insult the Maratha king. The opposition, however, continued to put pressure and now Shiv Sena (UBT), as well as NCP, have sought Koshyari’s removal.
Thackeray said an agitation, probably a Maharashtra bandh, would be organised if the Centre did not shift Koshyari in the next couple of days.
The stand taken by BSS – which is the ruling ally of the BJP – also means that the Thackeray-led party may become aggressive and hold protests to corner the Shinde-Fadnavis government on the issue. Thackeray is scheduled to hold a public rally at Chikhli in Buldhana on Saturday where he is again likely to speak on the controversy.
The BJP has already dismissed the demand. Fadnavis said that Koshyari’s statements are politicised.
Meanwhile, Raj Bhavan officials were tightlipped over the governor’s unscheduled Delhi visit.