Uddhav Thackeray – The current chief minister of the state of Maharashtra took the first step in politics with the help of his powerful father Blasaheb Thackeray. How unbelievable it seems that once being reluctant to enter politics, he is now holding a high constitutional post of his homeland. Uddhav Thackeray is the first in the line of Thackeray family to hold any such position. He was sworn in as the chief minister of Maharashtra on 28th November 2019, at Shivaji Park, where his father rests in peace. Expanding power from Mumbai Municipal Corporation to the Mantralaya, Uddhav Thackeray has had a fulfilling political journey.
Balasaheb Thackeray – who ruled the heart of Mumbaikars for a long time had three sons; Bindumadhav, Jaidev, and Uddhav. Bindumadhav Thackeray died in a road accident in 1996. Udhav is the only son of Balasaheb who is in the politics while his brother Jaidev maintains a very low profile. Uddhav Thackeray too is an artist interested in wildlife photography like his father who was a cartoonist. Uddhav Thackeray is married to Rashmi Thackeray. The couple has two sons, Aaditya and Tejas.
His political journey began when he became the editor of ShivSena’s newspaper Saamna. His position in the party magnified when ShivSena won the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation elections in 2002 when he was the editor in chief of saamna. This was also a time of growing rivalry between him and his cousin brother Raj Thackeray. The rivalry reached peak when Uddhav Thackeray was made the working president of ShivSena in 2003. It was believed that Raj Thackeray would be the political heir to Balasaheb Thackeray since he quite resembled with Balasaheb in his oratory skills and working style. However, Raj Thackeray left the party in 2005 and this paved the way for Uddhav to carry his father’s legacy in the party.
Party Presidency and the Chief Minister
He became Shiv Sena chief after the death of Balasaheb Thackeray in 2012. Being soft-spoken, it was a challenge for him to lead the party, however, he managed to keep the party integrated and created numerous loyalists. Uddhav Thakeray also proved his strength by winning 63 seats in the 2014 Maharashtra State Assembly elections when it had broken a 25-year-old alliance with BJP. The two parties reunited after the elections and formed a government. This year, BJP and ShivSena contested assembly elections in the alliance but engaged in a tussle over the post of Chief Minister. With Sharad Pawar being a mediator- ShivSena formed a MahaVikasAaghadi coalition with its ideological foes NCP and INC. The coalition declared him as the Chief Minister candidate and he is the current chief minister of Maharashtra. It remains to see how he manages the office with the heavyweight of ministers from INC and NCP.