Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Jay Bhagwan Goyal’s book “Aaj ke Shivaji: Narendra Modi” has been embroiled in controversies ever since it was launched. The book has been criticised for likening Prime Minister Narendra Modi to venerated Maratha warrior king Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.
The latest politician to attack Goyal was Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut. He said: “If this book is seen in anyone’s hand, they will have to face dire consequences.”
According to the Sena MP, this is not the first time Goyal has slighted Maharashtrians. He had reportedly abused Maharashtra and Marathis in the past.
Fuming, Raut took to Twitter and asked Maharashtra BJP to clarify its stance on the issue, following which the party distanced itself from the book, stating it has nothing to do with the publication and that the book or its title contains the author’s personal view.
He wrote in Marathi: “Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj cannot be compared with anybody in this world. There is only one Sun, one Moon, and only one Shivaji Maharaj...Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.”
So far, Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party, and Congress – all of which are part of the Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra - have criticised the book for drawing a comparison that hurt Marathi sentiments.
BJP MP Chhatrapati Sambhaji Raje - a descendant of Shivaji Maharaj – also sought a ban on the book and urged Home Minister Amit Shah to stop publication immediately.
He said: “We respect Narendra Modi, who was elected as the prime minister of the country for the second time. But neither Modi nor anybody else in the world can be compared with Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.
Meanwhile, the saffron party has informed that Goyal too, is willing to do away with excerpts that people have found objectionable.
Justifying his book’s title, Goyal said: “I only wanted to tell readers how Modi ji, just like Shivaji, strives to ensure inclusive development and has been able to achieve this feat so far. If it has hurt the sentiments of some people, I am willing to revise those parts of the book.”