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Rise of other Sena bahu

As one Thackeray bahu is on her way out of the Shiv Sena and keen to join the Congress, the other Thackeray daughter-in-law may well get to play a more active role in the Sena’s power circles. Rajendra Aklekar reports.

mumbai Updated: Jan 22, 2010 23:56 IST

As one Thackeray bahu is on her way out of the Shiv Sena and keen to join the Congress, the other Thackeray daughter-in-law may well get to play a more active role in the Sena’s power circles.

If Sena sources are to be believed, Rashmi Thackeray, wife of Sena Executive President Uddhav Thackeray, is likely to be appointed as a trustee of Prabodhan Prakashan Trust that publishes party mouthpiece Saamna.

An announcement may be made on Sena chief Balasaheb Thackeray’s 84th birthday on Saturday, party sources said.

The Prabodhan Trust wields enormous clout in the Shiv Sena. Its publication, Saamna, is Thackeray’s medium to communicate with the party cadre and also to make his stand clear on various issues.

It also brings out Hindi eveninger Dopahar Ka Saamna and Marathi fortnightly, Marmik that played an important role in Sena’s initial years.

Prabodhan’s current trustees are Uddhav, party spokesperson and strategist Subhash Desai and senior leader Liladhar Dake.
Inducting Rashmi in the trust also means she would play a bigger role in running the party mouthpiece. Thackeray himself is Saamna’s editor while spokesperson Sanjay Raut is the executive editor.

Desai refused to confirm or deny Rashmi’s new role. “Balasaheb will be the main attraction and highlight of the programme. He will make a personal appearance on Saturday,” he said.

The development comes barely weeks after Smita, wife of Thackeray’s second son, Jaidev, announced her intention of joining the Congress.

Once a powerful figure in the Sena, Smita was sidelined as Uddhav slowly took centrestage in the party.