Mumbai/Dhule/Jalgaon/Nagpur: Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking to blunt the talk by rivals that the BJP will divide Maharashtra if voted to power in the state, declared on Tuesday that “no power” can split Maharashtra while asserting that his party will secure an absolute majority in the Assembly polls.
“Congress leaders have been spreading lies on cotton and onion for the last 10 years. They have started spreading a new lie. Has anyone been born in this country who can divide the land of Shivaji?” he said addressing a rally in Dhule district.
“I assure you that as long as I am in Delhi, no power in the world can split Maharashtra and also separate Mumbai from Maharashtra,” he said, touching upon the contentious issue of creation of a separate Vidarbha.
The PM targeted the Congress and NCP but made no mention of the Shiv Sena, despite its leaders’ rant against him and the BJP.
But despite Mr Modi’s remarks, BJP Maharashtra chief Devendra Fadnavis tweeted that the state BJP remained firm on the formation of a Vidarbha state.
“We have a strategy of small states, and we are firm on our stand to form Vidarbha state. Mr Modi is also aware of our demand” Mr Fadnavis said.
While most BJP leaders have backtracked, Mr Fadnavis continued to support the demand for Vidarbha.