Against the backdrop of former Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis contracting COVID-19, Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut on Sunday said they were telling him to take care and he will now realise that the situation outside is serious. Raut's remarks came in the wake of Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray being recently targeted by the opposition for not moving out of his house during the pandemic.
Talking to reporters here, Raut said Thackeray has given directives to ensure that Fadnavis, who is leader of opposition in the state Assembly, gets the best treatment. Fadnavis on Saturday said he had tested positive for coronavirus.
The BJP leader was admitted to a government-run hospital in Mumbai and his condition was stable, a party source said. After returning to Mumbai on Friday evening, Fadnavis got himself tested as some of the BJP leaders who had travelled with him during the Bihar poll campaign tested positive for coronavirus, the source said.
Fadnavis also toured the flood-affected areas of western Maharashtra and Marathwada from October 19 to 21. "We were telling Devendra Fadnavis to take care. He will now realise that the situation outside is serious. The opposition was targeting the chief minister for not moving out," Raut said, when asked if Thackeray's annual Dusshera address on Sunday evening would target the BJP.
He said Fadnavis has set a good example by getting admitted to a government hospital, and Thackeray has given directives to ensure he gets the best treatment. The Shiv Sena's chief spokesperson also said the COVID-19 vaccine should be for all citizens and its politicisation was not right.
He further said the Shiv Sena has made arrangements to ensure Thackeray's Dussehra address reaches two crore people in the state. Had there been no COVID-19 outbreak, the Shivaji Park in central Mumbai would have been smaller for the "sea of Shiv Sainiks" who would have come to hear Thackeray's address, he said.
Raut also pointed out that at the Dussehra rally last year, he said the next chief minister of the state would be from the Shiv Sena. Thackeray will deliver his Dussehra speech at the Savarkar auditorium opposite the Shivaji Park in the evening and it will be attended by 50 people, including MLAs, MPs from Mumbai, ministers and the CM's family members.