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Sunday, Aug 25, 2019

‘Endorsement for CM post must come from people’: Aaditya Thackeray

Shiv Sena party youth wing chief Aaditya Thackeray says that endorsement should come from the people.

india Updated: Jul 21, 2019 09:09 IST

Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Shiv Sena Youth Leader Aaditya Thackeray is currently heading a Jan Ashirwad Yatra and is hopeful that people of Maharashtra will bring the Sena-BJP alliance for another term.
Shiv Sena Youth Leader Aaditya Thackeray is currently heading a Jan Ashirwad Yatra and is hopeful that people of Maharashtra will bring the Sena-BJP alliance for another term. (Bhushan Koyande/Hindustan Times)

Aaditya Thackeray, son of Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray and party youth wing chief, is on a Jan Ashirwad Yatra ahead of the September-October Maharashtra elections. Assured by ally Bharatiya Janata Party of equality in power-sharing in Assembly polls, Aaditya says that means sharing all posts, including that of chief minister. In an interview with Swapnil Rawal, he says he is ready to contest polls if people want it. Edited excerpts:

Q: Sena leaders have said they want to see you as Maharashtra chief minister. Are you ready to take up the top job?

I am not aiming for any top post. I am seeking Maharashtra’s views on what they want; I am thanking all those who voted for us. The Jan Ashirwad Yatra is also aimed at winning the hearts of those who haven’t voted for us. That is my first responsibility. The Sena leaders expressing the wish to see me as CM are [giving] their blessings. But the endorsement will have to come from the people of Maharashtra.

Q: What prompted you to consider a plunge into electoral politics?

I’ve never said no to any possibility, be it any responsibility in the state, in the government or getting elected as a legislator, because primarily I love this field. I feel it gives me 100% satisfaction. At the end of the day, a single decision can impact a billion lives. So this is the field where I can serve people in the maximum way possible. In that sense, I’m listening to what Maharashtra is telling me. If they want me to contest elections or take up any post...

Q: Will the decision on whether you’ll contest be taken at the end of this tour?

Absolutely — because it is the people who will have to tell me. I’ll be serving them in whatever capacity they see me; I will listen to them.

Q: There is an argument that you do not have the experience. What’s your response?

Last time there were elections, I couldn’t contest because I was 24 — short of one year for contesting. For the last 10 years, I have been trying to take the Shiv Sena to every nook and corner of the state and even outside the state. Be it farmers’ issues or students’ issues or women’s safety, there are so many issues we tried to tackle, like roads, schools and hospitals. We have not just been taking up issues but finding definitive, time-bound solutions. My responsibility now lies in whether the people trust me.

Q: There are a lot of statements about splitting the CM’s post. Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis said posts will be shared equitably. Will there be a Sena CM for 2.5 years?

I am nobody to speak on a matter the two party presidents have decided. Uddhavji , Amitji [BJP’s Amit Shah] and the honourable CM have said that there will be equitable distribution and sharing of power and posts. The statement is self-explanatory. I am too small to speak about it...

Q: But you were in the room when the discussion happened. Are you certain that Sena will get the CM’s post?

That’s what was said in the press conference. Equitable sharing of power and posts includes all posts and power.

Q: Will the Sena contest 144 seats in the upcoming elections?

That again is up to the party president to decide.

First Published: Jul 21, 2019 01:12 IST

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