Shinde to Uddhav: Have you become secular now?

The Indian Express | 5 days ago | 22-09-2022 | 03:45 am

Shinde to Uddhav: Have you become secular now?

Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Wednesday hit out at Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray, questioning hiscommitment to Hindutva while alluding that he had turned secular.“I was criticised for visiting Ganesh mandals during Ganesh festival. I used to visit the mandals even before becoming the chief minister and I continue to do so even today. It was me, who forced others to go for such darshans.But what about you? Have you become so secular that today you do not even call your father Balasaheb Thackeray Hindu Hriday Samrat (ruler of Hindu hearts),” Shinde asked Thackeray while addressing a gathering at the Maharashtra Sadan in Delhi.Shinde was addressing the state unit chiefs of his faction who were called for a meeting organised by Lok Sabha MP Rahul Shewale.Attacking Thackeray, Shinde said that the Sena is not a private limited company but the party that runs on the thoughts of the Sena founder.“We are not gaddar (traitors). We are the true soldiers of Balasaheb Thackeray. You call us a gang who is snatching someone else’s father. Should I call you the one who is selling your father’s ideology by aligning with Congress and NCP?” asked Shinde.The CM was referring to Thackeray’s speech at Nesco ground in Mumbai on Wednesday, where the Sena president taunted Shinde of attempting to snatch his father’s legacy.Shinde said, “Our leader Balasaheb Thackeray had said that if time comes to ally with Congress and NCP, he will close the party (Sena). But the desire for power overrode everything and an alliance was formed with Congress and NCP.”Taunting Thackeray that he never met party leaders in the two-and-a-half years when he was the state’s chief minister, Shinde said that it was his revolt that has made Thackeray talk to Sena workers.State ministers Sandipan Bhumare, Deepak Kesarkar and Uday Samant joined Shinde in his visit to Delhi along with LokSabha MPs who have supported him after his revolt against Thackeray.Shinde called Sena leaders from Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Puducherry, Kerala, West Bengal, Manipur and Tripura to Delhi for the gathering at Maharashtra Sadan.

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Times of India | 9 hours ago | 27-09-2022 | 08:13 am
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After losing Foxconn unit, Maharashtra sends mantris to study Gujarat model
Maharashtra: ‘Razing illegal portions of Union minister Narayan Rane’s home has to be done manually’
Times of India | 10 hours ago | 27-09-2022 | 06:37 am
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The Indian Express | 11 hours ago | 27-09-2022 | 05:45 am
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Bal Thackeray’s aide Champa Singh Thapa joins Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde faction
Times of India | 12 hours ago | 27-09-2022 | 04:41 am
Times of India
12 hours ago | 27-09-2022 | 04:41 am

MUMBAI: Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray's close family aide Champa Singh Thapa, often described as Balasaheb's 'shadow', on Monday threw in his lot with CM Eknath Shinde's group. Another Balasaheb aide Moreshwar Raje, who had served Thackeray at his residence 'Matoshree' for almost three decades, joined the Shinde faction too. "Champa Singh Thapa, who is considered the shadow of Shiv Sena chief Balasaheb Thackeray, and Moreshwar Raje, who served for a long time on Matoshree, announced their decision to support us," Shinde tweeted. Thapa, Man Friday to the Sena patriarch, had served him for 27 years till his death in November 2012. He was always seen standing behind Thackeray at public rallies and during press conferences. After Thackeray's death, Thapa began working for Uddhav Thackeray and was also seen at public meetings with him. Thapa didn't say if he wasn't happy with the way Uddhav was leading Sena. "I have always shadowed Balasaheb and will now shadow Shinde as I liked his thoughts. I was in touch with Matoshree and Uddhav saheb over the years but now I like Shindeji's thoughts and so came to extend my support to him," said Thapa. Shinde said the duo decided to join as his factionrepresents the "real" Shiv Sena and is taking forward the teachings of the Sena founder and his Hindutva ideology. "Balasaheb used to do straight talking and used to be blunt. People knew Balasaheb well and hence they did not accept Sena's alliance with Congress and NCP under the Maha Vikas Aghadi." Asked about speculation that five MLAs and MPs were poised to join his group, Shinde said: "Many people are in touch with many but I am not aware as of now of anyone joining us." Sena veterans said Raje used to attend to phone calls at Matoshree for Balasaheb, and had spent at least 35 years in the Thackeray residence. Thapa, who is from Nepal, was treated as a member of the Thackeray household, said Sena insiders. "After the death of Thackeray's wife Meenatai in 1996, Thapa's responsibility increased a lot. It was he who took care of Balasaheb, from meals to medicines. Thapa was so close he also participated in Balasaheb's last rites along with the rest of the family," said a Sena functionary. Thapa had also set up Shiv Sena's Nepal unit and had become a celebrity in the Nepalese community in the city.

Bal Thackeray’s aide Champa Singh Thapa joins Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde faction