Samajwadi Party MLA Abu Azmi has said that Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan sharing the dais with MNS chief Raj Thackeray was an "insult" to north Indians.
"Amitabhji sharing the stage with Raj Thackeray is an insult to millions of north Indians," Azmi told reporters in Mumbai.
Sinking their five-year-old differences, Amitabh Bachchan shared dais with Thackeray, who said whatever happened between him and the actor was a thing of the past. They had come together at the seventh anniversary of his party's movie industry wing Maharashtra Navnirman Chitrapat Karmachari Sena (MNCKS) at the Shanmukhanand Hall in Central Mumbai.
Azmi, who is also the state chief of Samajwadi Party, added that he was "pained" to see the iconic actor with the politician, who had launched a tirade against the north Indians. "It was painful for us to see Amitabh Bachchan sharing stage with Raj yesterday," Azmi said.
He further said that the actor should now clarify whether Raj Thackeray has accepted only him or all the people from north India. "Amitabhji should have asked the MNS chief to let go the hatred he has towards north Indians and also asked him to apologise to the north Indians," the SP leader said.
" Raj Thackeray has been playing politics and has been fooling the Marathi-speakers dividing the country on regional lines," he alleged.
Meanwhile, the Congress also criticised the MNS leader over his "double standards".
"Finally Raj Thackeray realised his mistake. He has adopted double standard approach to win votes," Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee spokesperson Sachin Sawant said.
Relations between the MNS chief and the Bollywood icon were strained for the past five years after Raj Thackeray had criticised the actor for becoming the brand ambassador of Uttar Pradesh.
Later, the MNS had also targetted Jaya Bachchan after she had said at a public function that being from Uttar Pradesh, she would prefer to speak in Hindi instead of Marathi.