'If my party comes to power, Mah will be changed'
Pune, Dec 4: The newly formed Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) President Raj Thackeray today asked for people's support and their mandate in the coming civic elections and said his party would certainly channelise all efforts towards the progress and prosperity of the historic city.
Mr Thackeray, addressing a mammoth rally at the Alka Talkies chowk this evening, lambasted the Congress and the NCP for their utter negeligence in addressing the common problems faced by the people, including bad roads, power, drinking water and drainage system.
Seeking support from the people, Mr Thackeray said, ''Give my party your prestigious mandate once only. Then you will definitely find the difference in our performance.'' ''I am not going to perform miracles but would give people the bare minimum facilities like improvment in roads, power supply and drinking water,'' he added.
He said his party was working on ambitious plans, especially in the field of Information Technology keeping in mind the younger generation, their needs and aspirations.
''If my party comes to power in near future, you will see a Maharashtra to be proud of,'' Mr Thackeray said.
People's plight has not changed for the past 59 years since the country gained indepenence. Not naming the parties, Mr Thackeray said they go to the people with the same manifesto of providing better housing, power and drinking water year after year but have not fullfilled the expectations of the people.
Mr Thackeray, who left Shiv Sena a year ago said he will come out with a one page manifesto and will abide by it to fullfill the aspirations of the people. He stressed, ''if people give me the mandate, the results will come.'' There are only two politicians of stature in the State -- Shiv Sena Supremo Mr Balasaheb Thackeray and NCP President Sharad Pawar.
Mr Thackeray, however, took a dig at Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar and recounted the unsavoury incident indulged by Australian team captain Ricky Ponting and his team-mate Damien Martin. Though the Aussie skipper apologised for the incident, Mr Thackeray gave it a new twist by saying that Martin signalled Pawar to step down from the stage while actually referring to the suicides of farmers in the state.
Referring to invitations extended to him by some young journalists from Pakistan, Mr Thackeray said he would step on the Pakistani soil only when Pakistan stopped terrorist activities adding that if Pakistan stops insurgency, he would be the first one to visit that country.
Mr Thackeray questioned why melody queen Lata Mangeshkar was not being allowed to sing before the Pakistani audience. In the same vein he demanded why Indians should entertain singers like Mehdi Hassan and Ghulam Ali and let Pakistani cricketers to play in India.
''It should not be one way traffic,'' he said.
The MNS has so far created 143 branches in the state. In Maharashtra there are over 43,000 villages and his party was trying to reach them step by step, Mr Thackeray added.