Uddhav Thackeray’s nephew meets Eknath Shinde, expresses support to ruling alliance
The development came amid a battle between factions led by Shinde and former Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to be recognised as the real Shiv Sena.
Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray’s grandson Nihar Thackeray on Friday met Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde in Mumbai.
Shinde said that Nihar Thackeray expressed his support for the ruling alliance in the state during the meeting. “On this occasion, I heartily welcomed him and gave my best wishes for his future social and political endeavours,” he added.
The meeting came amid a battle between factions led by Shinde and former Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray to be recognised as the real Shiv Sena.
Nihar Thackeray’s father, Bindumadhav Thackeray, was the eldest son of the Shiv Sena founder. Bindumadhav died in a car accident in 1996.
Nihar is a lawyer and is married to Bharatiya Janata Party leader Harshvardhan Patil’s daughter Ankita Patil, according to NDTV. He has not been active in politics.
The split in the Shiv Sena took place in June when Shinde rebelled against the previous Maha Vikas Aghadi government – a coalition of the Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party and the Congress.
Subsequently, the coalition was ousted from power as the Uddhav Thackeray-led faction was reduced to a minority in the state Assembly.
Shinde was sworn in as the chief minister of Maharashtra on June 30, while the Bharatiya Janata Party’s Devendra Fadnavis took oath as his deputy.
On July 4, Shinde won a floor test in the Maharashtra Assembly. He got 164 votes in his support, significantly above the majority mark of 145, while 99 MLAs voted against him.
The Election Commission has asked both the factions led by Shinde and Uddhav Thackeray to submit documents to prove that they have a majority of members backing them in the Shiv Sena.
Meanwhile, the Thackeray-led faction has filed a number of petitions in the Supreme Court on the matter. In these petitions, it has challenged the governor’s act of administering the oath of office to Shinde and questioned the election of the Maharashtra Speaker, among other things.
The Supreme Court is slated to hear the petitions on August 1.