Tension flared up on Thursday when workers of Eknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena and Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena (UBT) clashed with each other and raised slogans against each other at the memorial of late Bal Thackeray, whose The 11th anniversary is about to happen. Celebrated on Friday.
Police intervened to disperse the crowd, news agency PTI reported. Shiv Sena workers asserted their ownership of the party with passionate slogans, while those aligned with Uddhav Thackeray responded with “traitors go back” slogans.
The incident came to light when Chief Minister Shinde Bal reached the memorial at Shivaji Park in Dadar to pay tribute to Thackeray.
Addressing reporters, the CM highlighted that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had realized the late Shiv Sena founder’s dream of building a Ram temple in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh. The temple is scheduled to be inaugurated on the eve of Bal Thackeray’s birth anniversary.
While Thackeray was born on January 23, 1926, the consecration of the Ram temple in Ayodhya is scheduled for January 22.
CM Shinde emphasized that his government is committed to fulfilling the dreams and aspirations of Bal Thackeray.
Shiv Sena (Shinde faction) spokesperson Krishna Hegde said that, like last year, CM Shinde paid homage at the Shivaji Park memorial on the eve of the death anniversary to prevent any conflict. Hegde alleged that the situation became tense with the arrival of Uddhav Thackeray faction MP Anil Desai and MLC Anil Parab, who had come with a group of people to disrupt the peaceful occasion.
Hegde accused the Uddhav faction of trying to create anarchy and law-and-order situation and called it an unnecessary step. He emphasized that Balasaheb Thackeray belongs to everyone and everyone should get the opportunity to pay tribute. Hegde urged the Uddhav camp to follow his ideology if they really want to respect Bal Thackeray.
Shinde’s rebellion had led to a split in Shiv Sena in June last year. Since then, both the factions have been vying to lay claim to the legacy of Bal Thackeray, who is fondly known by his supporters as the ‘Hindu Hriday Samrat’.