Special Correspondent

MUMBAI: Shiv Sena leader Bal Thackeray said in a statement on Wednesday: “Amitabh Bachchan is an open-minded person and he has great love for Maharashtra and this is evident on many occasions. The actor has often said that Maharashtra and specially Mumbai has given him great fame and affection. He has also said that what he is today is because of the love people have given him. The people of Mumbai have always acknowledged him as an artiste. Despite all this it was utter foolishness to make these parochial allegations against him.”

“Amitabh is a global superstar. People all over the world respect him. This cannot be forgotten by anyone. Amitabh should ignore these silly accusations and concentrate on his acting.

“I wish him a long healthy life and pray to Goddess Jagdamba,” he said.

However, the statement did not contain anything about what Maharashtra Navnirman Sena leader Raj Thackeray said about north Indians. Neither did he overtly criticise his nephew.

Mr. Bal Thackeray and Mr. Bachchan recently came together on stage for the release of Uddhav Thackeray’s son Aditya’s music album.