After the Shiv Sena joined hands with Congress and NCP, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray plans to shift closer to the Hindutva ideology and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The MNS is also planning a complete makeover by changing its flag to saffron.
MNS leader Bala Nandgaonkar has confirmed that MNS may seek to join hands with BJP in the future against MVA. This decision of MNS comes as a counter-attack on Shiv Sena which has adopted a softer approach on Hindutva lately - including the addition of the word 'Secular' atop its Common Minimum Programme with the NCP and Shiv Sena.
According to senior MNS leaders, Raj Thackeray may make an announcement regarding this on January 23 – the birth anniversary of Shiv Sena founder and MNS chief’s mentor Bal Thackeray. He is likely to unveil the party’s new flag – a saffron flag with Maratha king Shivaji Maharaj’s rajmudra (seal) on it.
The current MNS flag has three colours – saffron, green and blue. The image of the old flag has already been removed from the party’s official Twitter handle, @mnsadhikrut.
As per reports, BJP workers in Palghar have put up a banner with a picture of MNS leader Raj Thackeray alongside Prime Minister Narendra Modi as well as former Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, and other local leaders. The banner has reportedly been put as a part of a campaign for the upcoming Zilla Parishad polls in Palghar and suggests that the BJP can ally with Raj Thackeray's MNS in the local body elections.
This comes after the fallout of Shiv Sena and the BJP. As per sources, BJP leader Ashish Shelar had met Raj Thackeray after its fallout with the Uddhav Thackeray-led Sena. Earlier on Saturday, sources had reported that Raj Thackeray is expected to adopt the hard Hindutva ideological space vacated by Shiv Sena on January 23. Amid this, Raj Thackeray has, however, continued to take on the However, back in December, the MNS leader had spoken against the BJP-led Central government's Citizenship Amendment Act. He had said that it is an attempt to distract the attention from the economic crisis in the country.