Mumbai: Rashmi Thackeray, the wife of Shiv Sena (UBT) President and former Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, is likely to address party’s women workers in Nashik later this month, party sources indicated here on Thursday.
Rashmi, currently the Editor of ‘Saamana Group’ of publications, will travel to Nashik to boost up the party cadres and prevent the continuous ‘leakage’ of party supporters, witnessed in the city Sena (UBT) since the past few months, after the split in June 2022.
Reputed to be a woman with a firm independent mind, she has always remained in the shadows to manage the Thackeray household for the past over two decades after she became a ‘Thackeray bahu’ 34 years.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) state President Chandrashekar Bawankule reacted sharply to the development saying that since the party (Sena-UBT) is being decimated, it has to rely on other family members to keep it going.
However, senior leaders like Sushma Andhare or Kishore Tiwari dismissed Bawankule’s statements and said that Uddhav and Aditya “are sufficient to give a strong challenge” to the BJP.
Tiwari also questioned Bawankule’s locus standi to comment on the Sena (UBT)’s internal matters, while Andhare said “nobody takes the BJP chief seriously”.
Nashik is considered a ‘weak-link’ in the Sena (UBT)’s scheme of things with the rival BJP, and even Raj Thackeray’s Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) going all out to woo the people there ahead of the upcoming civic elections.
Earlier, Rashmi has attended women activists camps and even certain political rallies addressed by her husband, and stood behind him like a rock during the crisis that split the party vertically nine months ago, with a loyalist-turned-dissident Eknath Shinde becoming the CM.
Simultaneously, Uddhav and Aditya go around on tours across the state to pep up the morale of their workers, and attempt to strengthen the Maha Vikas Aghadi alliance and pose a tough challenge to what they term ‘gaddar’ (traitor) Shinde.