Uddhav Thackeray aborts Balasaheb-Raj meeting!
Mumbai, Apr 1: Shiv Sena executive president Uddhav Thackeray is believed to have aborted a meeting scheduled between the party's octagenerian supremo Balasaheb Thackeray and his estranged nephew Raj Thackeray, who had recently floated his new political outfit called Maharasthra Navnirman Sena.
Raj tersely indicated that the meeting was scheduled yesterday and he believed it was called off under pressure from Uddhav.
The meeting was to take place at Matoshree residence of the senior Thackeray in suburban Bandra.
Raj, raising the banner of revolt in November last year, had held the "coterie of clerks "surrounding Uddhav responsible for his marginalisation in the Shiv Sena. He also regretted to having assented to his cousin becoming the executive president of the party.
That the senior Thackeray and his nephew have soft corner for each other has been obvious all these months as the Sena chief has never criticised Raj in his party organ 'Saamna', while Raj has always reverentially addressed his uncle as 'Vithoba'(a deity).
Sena sources defended Uddhav's action in aborting the meeting, saying it would have "sent wrong signals and confused the party rank and file" at a time when it is preparing for the big fight in the coming Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation elections early next year.
BMC is controlled by the Sena-BJP combine.
Raj had also used the picture of his uncle in the posters displayed at the rally held by his new party in the city on March 19. Though Saamna had taken objection to it, saying Balasaheb never approved of it, Raj claimed these were planted by some body. He asked if his uncle had indeed any objection to the use of his photograph, the latter could have told him when he (Raj) went to greet him on his birthday on January 23.
Saamna executive editor Sanjay Raut said he was not aware of the meeting but senior party leader Manohar Joshi reportedly said the meeting was cancelled dut to ''unvaoidable circusmstances''.
Sources close to Raj said the aborted meeting could still take place but at Raj's Shivaji Park residence, claiming the Sena chief have had always considered him as his political protege instead of his own son.
The senior Thackeray had temporarily shifted to Raj's house in July, last year when Matoshree was flooded by torrential rains in the city on July 26-27.