As relation between allies Shiv Sena and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is getting bitter with each passing day, all eyes are on Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray’s address to his party cadre on Wednesday about Sena’s future steps. The address holds signifiance as elections to several civic bodies and zilla parishads are around the corner.
Thackeray will speak at the Shiv Sena’s convention of its office-bearers and senior leadership across the state at Rang Sharada auditorium in Bandra at 1pm today. His address will come a day after the tussle between the BJP and Shiv Sena reached the state cabinet, with the latter’s ministers staging a walk out.
Sena minister Diwakar Raote said, “We voiced our objections to the hawking policy and the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train proposal as per our rights to express our opinions in the cabinet. We were mainly displeased with the BJP for the sudden change in the guardian ministership of Yavatmal district, taking it away from a Sena leader and giving it to a BJP leader. We haven’t had any word with the chief minister ever since.”
Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis had shuffled the district guardianship last week by divesting some of the minister’s responsibility of major districts and appointing associate guardian ministers in some districts. Sena’s Raote was made the guardian minister of Osmanabad by divesting his responsibility of Parbhani district. Similarly, minister of state for revenue (Shiv Sena) Sanjay Rathod was stripped of the responsibility of Yavatmal district and was appointed guardian minister of Washim district. Minister of state (BJP) Madan Yerawar will replace him. Sensing that the BJP was trying to cut the party to size in Yavatmal, Shiv Sena ministers expressed discontent during the meeting of the state cabinet.
Wednesday’s convention will be attended by the Sena’s legislators, parliamentarians, ministers, corporators, leaders, district coordinators, district heads, taluka heads and so on.
An editorial in Sena mouthpiece, Saamana, on Wednesday read, “The convention assumes special significance this time in light of the upcoming elections. The entire party, as well as the media, is awaiting what the party chief is likely to say.”