Mumbai, June 28: Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday laid a red carpet for the visiting Gujarat Chief Minister, Narendra Modi, at his residence Matoshree and said that he looked to the latter to take the BJP-Sena alliance to greater heights.
Modi visited the Thackerays two days after the Sena chief expressed his displeasure over Modi's 'Rambo' act of rescuing 15,000 Gujaratis from the flood-ravaged Uttarakhand. Thackeray remarked in his party mouthpiece that such act was divisive in nature.
He later took a U-turn by saying that he was not against the Gujarat chief minister but the latter's propaganda machinery. It is believed that Modi visited Matoshree to pacify the Thackerays for the BJP can not afford to lose more allies after the JD(U)'s pull-out from the NDA earlier this month.
It is said the displeasure expressed by the BJP's top leadership also played a role behind Thackeray's mellowing down. The actual reason behind Thackeray's displeasure could be the projection that he was being ignored by the BJP while making overtures at the other Thackeray, Raj, who leads the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena. The BJP, however, has made it clear that it could not see itself victimised in the row between the two cousin brothers.
Bjp leaders said the meeting between Modi and Thackeray would flag off a new beginning in the relation between the two saffron allies. It was also believed to be a signal to the MNS, which had scoffed at the BJP for trying to form a grand alliance against the Congress in the state politics.
The Sena chief told Modi that they hoped the two parties would achieve a grand success in the polls under the latter's leadership. Modi, on the other hand, said the BJP-Sena alliance would be strengthened to defeat the Congress. He said the Sena has a strong base and would ask the BJP to work closely with its workers to reach out to the people.
A senior leader, who was part of Modi's delegation, said the 20-minute long meeting was also an effort to instill a sort of confidence in the Sena by allaying its fears that the BJP was wooing the MNS at its expense.
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