Thackerays soften stand on bandh due to Ganeshotsav

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Raj Thackeray-Uddhav Thackeray
Mumbai, Sept 17: The Bharat Bandh on Sept 20 announced by the NDA to protest the diesel price hike, subsidised LPG cylinders cap and FDI in retail is not likely to cause a complete shutdown in Maharashtra. This is after parties including Shiv Sena, BJP and the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) took a softer approach to the bandh call due to Ganeshotsav being celebrated on Sept 19.

In spite of the political leaders softening their stand, Mumbai's traders and wholesale market have offered their support to the bandh. Shiv Sena executive president Uddhav Thackeray, who took part in a morcha from Dadar to Siddhivinayak temple, has been quoted as saying, "We will not create any hindrance to transport and add to citizens' woes by participating actively in the bandh. We'll participate in the agitation, but ensure it doesn't affect Ganeshotsav."

MNS chief Raj Thackeray also in an apparent shift from the hard line stand typical of the MNS said that his party will not be participating in the bandh.

Ruling out any rift with the NDA, Uddhav commented that he would have backed the bandh completely had it not been for the festival.

BJP Maharashtra president Sudhir Mungantiwar stated to media channels, "We will not come out on the streets. The bandh will be enforced voluntarily. We will not enforce a shutdown using force. We will ensure that public transport isn't affected."

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