Samajwadi Party leader Abu Asim Azmi, who had been slapped by MNS activists in the Maharashtra Assembly for not speaking in Marathi, yesterday unfriended Raj Thackeray from his Facebook account.
“Yes,” said Azmi, when contacted. “I wanted to send a strong message to Raj that violence in any form will not be tolerated. I have 347 friends in my Facebook account and we all network like a happy family. There is no place for violence here. I hope this makes Raj realise the error of his ways.”
Sources close to Azmi said that soon after the unfriendment, his Facebook account received a poke from Raj Thackeray. “He wants to be back in the friend’s list. But we will wait for some time to see if there is any improvement in his behaviour. He has only himself to blame for being unfriended,” said the source.
While Raj Thackeray was not available for comment, MNS spokesperson Shirish Parkar said his party would not bow to such pressure tactics. “Rajsaheb will not go back on his demand that all those in Maharashtra must speak in Marathi.” When told about Raj poking Azmi on Facebook, Parkar looked a little puzzled. He said, “Rajsaheb does not eat pork. There is no question of sending it to Azmi.”