<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a sensational and stunning claim, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray said fugitive underworld don Dawood Ibrahim was in talks with the Centre for a surrender. He charged that this would be claimed as an achievement by the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi for winning the next Lok Sabha polls. The son of a Mumbai police head constable, Dawood attained notoriety as an organised crime lord and smuggler and the kingpin of the 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts which claimed 257 lives and left over 700 injured. The underworld don is believed to be hiding in Pakistan. “One thing that I have understood is that Dawood Ibrahim wants to come back to India… He is handicapped and wants to die in this land of India. He is hence doing a settlement with the Centre. It is his wish, but they (BJP) will claim they brought Dawood back to India and win the polls on this plank. They will claim that years after the bomb blasts, the Congress could not bring him back, but their man, our Prime Minister (Narendra Modi) did this,” claimed Raj. “They will not bring him back, it is his wish,” he added. Raj was speaking on Thursday at the launch of his official Facebook page and said as a cartoonist, he would tell people “what lay between the lines.” In the early 1990s, the Shiv Sena and BJP alliance had promised to bring Dawood to justice in India with senior BJP leader, the late Gopinath Munde claiming they would “get back Dawood in shackles.” Raj also attacked Modi and claimed that his pre-poll promises like bringing back black money to India had not come to reality. He added that hence, the tide on social media was gradually turning against the BJP. Claiming that the Mumbai- Ahmedabad bullet train was meant for Gujaratis in the two cities, Raj questioned why longer routes like Mumbai- Delhi, Mumbai- Chennai or Mumbai- Kolkata had not been chosen for the high-speed network. “There is a dream to merge Mumbai with Gujarat and this is part of that exercise,” he claimed. Opposing any imposition of Hindi, he said while Marathi had a history dating back to the 8th century, that of Hindi was just around 125 years ago. India was also like Europe with each state having a different language, cuisine and festivals. Raj also alleged that the ongoing expansion of the Metro railway network in and around Mumbai was aimed at pushing up real-estate prices to make housing unaffordable for Maharashtrians. “They want to do away with the existence of Maharashtrians,” he claimed, while warning of reprisals. The MNS chief, who had supported Modi’s bid for the Prime Minister’s post, said people had “given him power as they felt something good will happen.” He lashed out at Modi and claimed he took up issues like yoga, Swachh Bharat and now football and discarded them later.
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