Report Wire - The Eknath Shinde story: Former auto driver who modified the sport in Maharashtra politics

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The Eknath Shinde story: Former auto driver who modified the sport in Maharashtra politics

4 min read
The Eknath Shinde story: Former auto driver who changed the game in Maharashtra politics


MUMBAI: Shiv Sena chief Eknath Shinde, who’s on the centre of the present political turmoil in Maharashtra, had a humble beginnings and rose to develop into a prime member of the celebration, within the course of buying formidable organizational expertise and a large mass base.

Once an auto-rickshaw driver in Thane metropolis adjoining Mumbai, Shinde (58) rapidly emerged as a key Sena chief within the Thane-Palghar area after becoming a member of politics and is thought for aggressive strategy in the direction of problems with public curiosity.

The Sena chief, a four-time MLA who holds city growth and PWD portfolios within the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) authorities, by no means hides his humble origins. On the opposite, he makes it a degree to say it at occasions to underscore how he has been indebted to the saffron celebration and its founder late Bal Thakeray for his rise in state politics.


Born on February 9, 1964, Shinde left his schooling earlier than he might full commencement and shortly acquired related to the Shiv Sena when it was rising within the state. Originally hailing from Satara district in western Maharashtra, Thane district, a Sena stronghold, is now his political house.

Bal Thackeray fashioned Shiv Sena in 1966 on ‘sons-of-the-soil’ plank and later the celebration aggressively championed the reason for Hindutva. The celebration’s aggressive strategy in the direction of points near its coronary heart and the highly effective persona of Bal Thackeray prompted Shinde to hitch the Sena in Thane.

The sitting MLA from Kopri-Pachpakhadi in Thane metropolis is thought for participating in road politics and faces dozens of prison prices akin to voluntarily inflicting harm by harmful weapons and rioting, amongst others.

Growing underneath the shadows of Shiv Sena stalwart from Thane Anand Dighe, he grew to become his deputy and strengthened the celebration after the sudden demise of his colleague in 2001.

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He grew to become a corporator within the Thane Municipal Corporation in 1997 and received his maiden Assembly election in 2004 and is at the moment in his fourth time period as an MLA. Shinde, usually seen because the No. 2 chief within the celebration, was made Sena’s Thane district head in 2005. His son Dr Shrikant Shinde is the sitting Lok Sabha MP from Kalyan within the district.

Shinde was appointed the Leader of Opposition within the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly for a short interval in 2014 when Sena had not finalised its pact with the then-ally BJP for becoming a member of the Devendra Fadnavis cabinet.

His clout grew when the Shiv Sena joined fingers with the BJP to type a authorities underneath Fadnavis post-2014 meeting elections.

Shinde, a popualr political determine, got here nearer to then-Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis (2014-19) and their affiliation grew to become a matter of dialogue a lot in order that aside from the Thane Municipal Corporation (the Sena minister’s house turf), the BJP contested elections to all civic our bodies in Maharashtra in 2016 in opposition to the Shiv Sena.

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When the Shiv Sena snapped ties with the BJP and fashioned the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) authorities with the NCP and the Congress in late 2019, he grew to become a cabinet minister.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, regardless of the NCP dealing with the well being ministry, it was Shinde- managed MSRDC division that arrange healthcare centres in Mumbai and its satellite tv for pc cities to deal with coronavirus sufferers. His closeness with Fadnavis turned his personal celebration leaders in opposition to him.

The rigidity grew a lot that after Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray grew to become chief minister in 2019, Shinde was made guardian minister of Naxal-hit Gadchiroli district (together with Thane), positioned faraway within the Vidarbha area which is usually seen as a punishment. However, Shinde remained a key political asset for the Shiv Sena.

Shinde is taken into account a pacesetter with grassroots contact as he’s all the time obtainable to listen to the grievances of celebration employees and colleagues. He is thought to start out his day early within the morning and proceed his visits to celebration employees until late night time.

Ironically, Shinde himself went incommunicado on Tuesday morning and later surfaced in a Surat resort with a bunch of Sena MLAs, plunging the two-and-a-half-year previous MVA right into a deep political disaster along with his act of revolt in opposition to his celebration’s management.