A day after Shiv Sena's Sanjay Raut stirred controversy claiming 'Indira Gandhi met with don Karim Lala', Sena's mouthpiece - Saamana, on Friday, reminded BJP of its MLA Udayan Raje Bhonsale's criticism of PM Modi - specifically when he had remarked 'Who is Modi? In Satara Modi Pedhewale is famous'. Moreover, Saamana- whose executive editor is Raut himself, stated that it felt happy that BJP has become fond of the great Indira Gandhi also now. Reiterating the 'Pathan' defence, Sena again tried to justify that the former PM had met with the don to resolve issues of Pathans around the world.
HUGE: Outspoken Sanjay Raut retracts his remarks on Indira Gandhi after Congress fury
Saamana hits out at BJP
Terming BJP as idle, Saamana alleged that Karim Lala had met with leaders of political parties during the sixties. Slamming former CM Devendra Fadnavis for giving a ticket to Munna Yadav, Saamana said that 'Indira Gandhi had destroyed Pakistan into pieces' and as PM had to meet separatists, dons and many such public figures. Accusing BJP of using Chhatrapati Shivaji for its own convenience, Saamana stated that Shiv Sena has not done anything of that sort.
Satara shut down, Sanjay Raut's name emblazoned on donkey for questioning Shivaji heir
Raut: Indira Gandhi met Karim Lala
Talking about the past influence of the underworld over Mumbai, Sanjay Raut claimed that the underworld decided who will be the city's commissioner and in the state secretariat. Moreover, he claimed that the entire secretariat would meet don Haji Mastan when he was in town. While BJP has backed Raut's remarks, the Congress has denied any such meeting between the former PM and Lala.
"They (underworld) used to decide who will be Mumbai's police commissioner and who will sit in Mantralaya (state secretariat)," Raut said. He added, "When (underworld don) Haji Mastan came to Mantralaya, the entire secretariat would come down to see him. Indira Gandhi used to meet Karim Lala in Pydhonie (in south Mumbai)".
Shiv Sena sources claim Raut's 'Indira-don' remark due to his brother's cabinet exclusion
Sanjay Raut questions Shivaji's descendant
But facing severe backlash from several top Congress leaders like Sanjay Nirupam, Milind Deora and Abhishek Singhvi over his controversial remark, Raut retracted his statement. Amid the heated debate on a BJP leader's book calling PM Modi - today's Shivaji, the Sena MP on Wednesday said that Udayan Rajan should bring evidence of being Shivaji's descendant. This led to a huge uproar with Satara being shutdown BJP youth wing protesting, a complaint being filed against Raut by BJP MLA Ram Kadam.
"He should bring proof that he is the descendant of Chhatrapati Shivaji. Shivaji Maharaj is considered as God and one does not go to God and tell him before worshipping him. No one has the ownership rights over Shivaji Maharaj," Raut said, in an interview.
Amid Raut row, swift attack-defence on Devendra Fadnavis-Munna Yadav meeting breaks out