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Team Anna divided over Hazare's praise for MNS chief

Last updated on: April 26, 2012 22:22 IST

Image: Anna Hazare meets Raj Thackeray at the latter's residence in Mumbai on Thursday
Photographs: Sahil Salve

Team Anna appeared to be divided on Raj Thackeray on Thursday with Anna Hazare praising the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief Raj Thackeray saying his work "appeals" to him and its key member Prashant Bhushan disapproving his politics.

After meeting Raj in Mumbai, Hazare lauded the leader of MNS for initiatives like conducting examination for party candidates to contest the civic body polls held in February.

The Gandhian said Raj's work really "appeals" to him.

"Raj has expressed his willingness to support a strong and effective Lokayukta in Maharashtra," Hazare told reporters after the meeting in Dadar to lobby for MNS support for a strong Lokayukta in Maharashtra.

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'We do not support Raj Thackeray's ways'

Image: Prashant Bhushan
Photographs: Sanjay Sawant/

But Bhushan said he is not in agreement with Raj's style of politics.

"We do not support Raj Thackeray's ways (like his opposition to north Indians)," the Supreme Court laywer told reporters in Delhi when asked about Hazare's praise of the estranged nephew of Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray.

However, another Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal said he was not aware of any such remarks by Hazare and therefore could not make a comment.

Hazare is in Mumbai to meet political leaders to muster support for a strong Lokayukta legislation in the state.

'Balasaheb Thackeray won't meet Hazare'

Image: Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray has refused to meet Anna Hazare in Mumbai

Meanwhile, in a snub to Anna Hazare, Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray on Thursday refused to meet him days after he questioned the relevance of the Gandhian's anti-corruption crusade.

However, Hazare remained unfazed over Thackeray's refusal to meet him.

"If he is not meeting me, it will not affect me. I am not meeting him for my selfish interest. I am meeting him as the issue (Lokayukta) is important for the state," Hazare told reporters after his meeting with Raj.

Thackeray's son and Sena executive president Uddhav defended his father, saying he would not meet Hazare as long as the social activist was accompanied by "corrupt people".

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