Won't Go With "Scoundrel": When Bal Thackeray Rejected Alliance With NCP

In an interview to NDTV in 1999, Bal Thackeray had used the term "scoundrel" while rejecting the possibility of any alliance with Sharad Pawar.

Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray had declared that he would "never" align with Sharad Pawar's NCP.

Highlights

  • Bal Thackeray had said he would "never" align with Sharad Pawar's NCP
  • "I will not go along with a scoundrel, whoever he may be," he had said
  • The two had worked together during the 1982 textile workers' strike
Mumbai:

As Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray desperately reached out to Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Nationalist Congress Party leader Sharad Pawar for support to form government in Maharashtra, videos and quotes of his father Bal Thackeray's caustic attacks on both parties were circulated online.

In an interview to NDTV in 1999, Bal Thackeray had used the term "scoundrel" while rejecting the possibility of any alliance with Sharad Pawar.

The Shiv Sena founder had been asked about the possibility of an alliance with his bitter rival.

"Possibility in politics...what? If at all it is said that it is a game of scoundrels, it is for a man to decide whether he wants to remain a gentleman or a scoundrel. If anybody's trying to become a scoundrel, then? But I will not go along with a scoundrel, whoever he may be," Thackeray senior said.

Mr Thackeray also declared that he would "never" align with Sharad Pawar's NCP.

"The man responsible for toppling the (BJP's) Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led government, how can we afford to shake hands with him? I will never at least. I will never."

"Sharad Pawar was the one who openly said to the press - 'yes, my responsibility was to topple the government. That I have done'. He's an expert in that. Knowing full well that he is the man (responsible) for the damage...think of the people, the voters. Will they tolerate it? They will say you are cheating us," said Bal Thackeray.

Despite the bitter comments, Mr Thackeray and Mr Pawar were close at one point, during the 1980s. They worked together during the 1982 textile workers' strike. The two fell out after Shiv Sena's Chhagan Bhujbal launched a campaign accusing Mr Pawar publicly of a corruption scam.

In 1995, Mr Thackeray's party defeated Sharad Pawar, then chief minister of a Congress government.

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