Mumbai: Shiv Sena has a 50-year-long legacy of “waging struggles for the cause of Hindutva and Marathi manoos” and will continue to fight for these, party president Uddhav Thackeray said here today.
Speaking at a book release function, Thackeray said Sena is not merely a “political party, but an ideology that is deeply rooted in the common man”.
“Shiv Sena has attained this position after a long struggle in last 50 years and whatsoever has happened is before you. We have the history of struggle during this phase but at the same time we are indebted to all Shiv Sainiks who sacrificed everything to live up the expectations of Marathi manoos,” he said.
“When we fought for Marathi Manoos, we were termed as having a chauvinistic ideology and forgetting our nation. (Conversely) when we came forward to uplift the cause of Hindutva, opponents asked whether we have forgotten the Marathi cause.
“But I want to (make it) clear that we have been struggling for both these causes during the past 50 years and would be striving to do so in future as well,” the Sena chief said.
Shiv Sena, founded by Bal Thackeray in 1966, completed its golden jubilee last month. The book in Marathi, “Suvarn Mahotsavi Shivsena: 50 Vershachi Ghaud-daud” is penned by senior party office-bearers Harshal Pradhan and Vijay Sawant.
Stressing that “many more phases of 50 years” will come for Sena, Thackeray said his party will continue to fight for the upliftment of common people.
“Our first and foremost priority has been to serve the common man who is very much concerned about the prices of pulses and common vegetables. Our priority is not those who deal with the prices of stock market,” he said.
In a veiled dig at its alliance partner BJP, Thackeray said, “whosoever wants to overpower us will never be successful.”
“The dream to finish Sena would remain a dream and Sena would continue to flourish,” he said.
Pradhan said, “In terms of seats, Shiv Sena’s graph might have seen some fluctuations, but people of the state always hold the party in high esteem, which is never-ending.”
City Mayor Snehal Ambekar, ministers from the party Subhash Desai, Diwakar Raote and Ravindra Waikar and senior leaders were present on the occasion.