Thousands gather at Shivaji Park to pay tribute to Bal Thackeray
Followers of Bal Thackeray will be able to pay their last respects to the leader at the Shivaji Park ground today. Thackeray's body will be kept at the ground at 10 am onwards. HT reports. Ideological switch for big dividends | A friend whom even rivals trusted | Mumbai on high alert | Mourning outside Matoshreemumbai Updated: Nov 18, 2012 07:36 IST
The mortal remains of Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray will be consigned to the flames Sunday evening at the crematorium beside Shivaji Park, revered as 'Shiv Tirth' by Shiv Sainiks in Maharashtra, a party official said.
"Thackeray's body is at present kept at Matoshri. Tomorrow morning, around 7.30am, it will be taken to Shiv Sena Bhavan for party workers to pay their respects. From there, it will be taken to Shivaji Park where the public can pay their last respects from 10am," party MP Sanjay Raut told mediapersons on Saturday evening.
Matoshri, the Thackeray residence, is in Bandra East in central Mumbai while Shivaji Park, a sprawling historic ground and cradle of Indian cricket, is in Dadar West, barely six km from Bandra.
Elaborate arrangements were being made by an army of workers at Shivaji Park for the sea of humanity expected Sunday, also a holiday.
Mumbai Police are also making fool-proof security arrangements in Bandra, along the entire route to Shiv Sena Bhavan, the party headquarters in Dadar West, and to the Shivaji Park.
Raut said public 'darshan' would be allowed from 10am to 5pm at Shivaji Park. Later, the funeral will be held at crematorium nearby.
He again appealed to all grieving party activists to "maintain peace and remain calm" in the wake of the tragedy that has befallen the party and the Thackeray family.
Thackeray passed away at 3.33pm on Saturday after prolonged illness and battling for life the past one week.
Earlier, there were reports that Thackeray had actually passed away a few days ago, but top party leaders dismissed them as "false" and asserted that he was "very much in our midst" and fighting for life.