PUNE/SATARA: Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray has trained his guns on Prime Minister Narendra Modi while backing Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh's stand that hosting Pakistani players in his state for the T20 World Cup match against India would amount to disrespect to martyrs.

Without taking Modi's name, Thackeray referred to the 'chhappan inch ki chhati (56-inch chest)' adage and told a Sena convention in Satara: "The size of chest does not matter. What matters is courageous stand in situations like Pathankot attack by Pakistan. Even as discussions on the Pathankot attack are not yet finished, talks for cricket match have started. What is more important? National security or cricket match?"

"The government must take a strong stand on such attacks," he added. The Himachal CM was also backed by the Sena mouthpiece 'Saamana' in its editorial on Wednesday. "Virbhadra Singh has opposed this cricket match in his state. This opposition is not political and neither is it religious. This opposition is for the country as many families of the slain jawans reside there. If he (Singh) thinks that holding a match will be a disrespect to the martyred soldiers, will you (the BJP) label him an 'anti-national' and hang him for this crime?" said the editorial.

Uddhav also came down heavily on Modi's pet scheme Smart Cities Mission. "Cities like Mumbai and Pune are already smart. What is the point of implementing the project in few areas of such cities. The smaller cities should be developed in such a manner that they can compete with Pune and Mumbai," he said.