"Sen is an economist of international repute and such demands shouldn't be made by his detractors," Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray said in an editorial in party mouthpiece Saamana.

"Amartya Sen is an economist, but the poor of the country wonder what exactly he does. The economy of the country is in a bad state, prices are soaring and poverty is on the rise. It is not Modi who has done this and despite being a Nobel laureate, Amartya Sen has no medicine for this," he said.

"If people ask Sen to first do his work properly and refrain from poking his nose in politics, what reply does he have," Uddhav said, adding, "Amartya Sen's greatness cannot be denied. The demand to strip him of Bharat Ratna is also not right. Everyone should maintain one’s limit."

Sen had recently said that he does not want Modi to become India's Prime Minister as he did not have secular credentials. The prominent economist had also criticized Modi's model of governance. Following this, BJP's Rajya Sabha member and journalist Mitra had demanded stripping Sen off the Bharat Ratna – the country's highest civilian honour.
 
"Amartya Sen says that he doesn't want Modi to be India's PM. Is Sen even a voter in India? Next NDA government must strip him of Bharat Ratna," Mitra had tweeted, triggering a storm of protest from BJP's opponents. The BJP also distanced itself from Mitra's comment.

Backing Modi, BJP's poll campaign committee chief, on the American visa issue, Uddhav said, "Narendra Modi is not the head of a terror organization like Al Qaeda, Taliban or Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) but an elected Chief Minister of a state.

"The US gives visas to Kashmiri separatist leaders. Pakistan is the den of terrorism. Despite the US forces killing Osama on Pakistani soil, Pakistani politicians still get US visa, but Modi is opposed," he said.

(Agencies)

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