The war of words escalated between Maharashtra state Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari and CM Uddhav Thackeray over the reopening of worship places. It all began with the Governor’s letter to the CM. As the festival season is around the corner, the Governor asked the CM to “announce forthwith” the reopening of places of worship with Covid precautions. However, the Governor’s letter was filled with satire. He asked CM Uddhav whether he had “turned secular”.
The Governor also called it “ironical” that bars, restaurants and beaches were allowed to open and “our Gods and Goddesses have been condemned to stay in the lockdown”.He also reminded the Chief Minister that other cities had reopened such places in June and there had been no reports of a surge in Covid-19 cases.
“You have been a strong votary of Hindutva. You had publicly espoused your devotion for Lord Rama by visiting Ayodhya after taking charge as Chief Minister. You had visited the Vitthal Rukmini Mandir in Pandharpur and performed the puja on Ashadhi Ekadashi. I wonder if you are receiving any divine premonition to keep postponing the reopening of places of worship time and again or have you turned ‘secular’ yourselves, a term you hated?,” Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari wrote in his letter.
Meanwhile, CM Uddhav Thackeray responded to the Governor’s letter saying the state government is “thinking over” reopening of worship places. He, however, said the government cares about the “lives of people of Maharashtra”.
Uddhav also strongly countered the Governor’s Hindutva and secular remarks. “And yes, I am someone who follows Hindutva, my Hindutva doesn’t need verification from you,” said CM Uddhav Thackeray. He said imposing a lockdown all of a sudden was not right and added that revoking it completely at once will also not a good thing. Meanwhile, Uddhav brought up the issue of Kangana without naming her directly. Indirectly hinting at actress Kangana Ranaut, CM Uddhav Thackeray said “inviting people who call Mumbai PoK with smiles does not fall into my definition of Hindutva”.
This war of words between the Governor and CM in the state has kicked up a political controversy. This war between the Governor and CM is in line with the ongoing war between Shiv Sena and BJP in the state. The political war has been intensified after the mysterious death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput and the controversy surrounding it.