Home / Elections 2019 / Assembly Elections 2019 /  Aditya Thackeray: The changing face of Shiv Sena politics

NEW DELHI : Even before getting elected as a member of the state legislature, 29-year-old Aditya Thackeray has already made history. He is the first from the Thackeray clan to contest elections ever since Shiv Sena was founded by his grandfather in 1966.

The Thackeray scion is perhaps getting more attention than most of his contemporary politicians for the kind of politics and image he is trying to represent – educated, socially and environmentally conscious, articulate in a multiple of languages, demand to make Mumbai a city that never sleeps, mass outreach approach and his dressing style.

A simple glance on his twitter bio says it all: “Voicing the Youth, Poems and Photography: Passion. President, Yuva Sena. President-Mumbai District Football Association Instagram: adityathackeray". And the picture that accompanies his twitter bio completes his image: clad in a formal off white shirt, black trouser, a matching spec with white rims and left hand on a black spotlight. The background of his picture boasts of a product brand name that ends with ‘couture jeweller’.

The elder son of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, Aditya reached out to a varied segment of people with a focus on youth in the past few months more structurally – be it in buses during school hours, train or during his ‘Jan Ashirwad Yatra’, a move that political observer believes is aimed at giving a face-lift to his party in the state.

“Election is not about the election time, it’s about the five year period in between when you have to reach out to people, listen to them, raise their voice and be fully ready. That way we are fully ready," Thackrey said during a TV interview last month adding that his “party’s alliance with BJP has always been strong" indicating that he as the Gen X of Shiv Sena is not confronting BJP at least now.

Early trends of election results show that the BJP-Sena alliance is set to return to power in Maharashtra. As of 11 a.m. Thursday, Shiv Sena is doing well very and Thackeray is leading from his Worli assembly constituency.

A graduate in history and law, Aditya Thackeray early image of being blatant and brazen has changed to some extent. His interaction with media and with public in general is more calculated that lets say when he was a student leader. In 2010, he burnt copies of a book in Mumbai University for its critical views on Shiv Sena politics. Off late, he got a lot of support from people following his stand against deforestation in Aarey forest for a metro project.

“The vigour with which the @MumbaiMetro3 is slyly and swiftly cutting down an ecosystem in Aarey is shameful and disgusting. How about posting these officials in PoK, giving them charge to destroy terror camps rather than trees?," he wrote in a tweet post in early October indicative of his party’s stand on terror and trees.

According to his election affidavit, the Thackeray junior is worth a little over 16 crore including movable assets worth 11.38 crore and immovable assets worth 4.67 crore. He owns BMW car, currently valued at 6.5 lakh and does not have any criminal cases against him.

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