Shiv Sena discusses Maharashtra Cabinet expansion and Bal Thackeray memorial

Mumbai: Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday held an urgent meeting with senior party leaders and ministers from Mumbai at the Mayors Bungalow here to discuss names of leaders to be included in the proposed Cabinet expansion.

Besides this, it discussed the pressing issue of finding suitable plot of land in Mumbai for the proposed grand memorial to be built in memory of late Sena chief Bal Thackeray, whose third death anniversary falls on November 17.

Sena sources said the leaders also discussed the proposed statewide tour of Uddhav from December 5, the strained relations with BJP and the way BJP ministers treat Sena ministers in the Cabinet.

A senior party leader said that the Sena is likely to fill two vacant berths in its quota. However, there are as many as four contenders for the two Cabinet berths. Among those whose names are doing rounds in the Sena circles are senior MLC Dr Neelam Gorhe (Pune), Gulabrao Patil (Jalgaon Rural), Arjun Khotkar (Jalna), Dr Sujit Minchekar (Hatkanangale) and Rajesh Kshirsagar (Kolhapur North). The names of Gorhe and Patil are likely to be considered, the leader said.

There was also a discussion on the preparations for Bal Thackeray’s death which will be observed at Shivaji Park, Dadar. Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had already agreed to approve the site which will be selected by Sena for the proposed memorial in Mumbai.

At a recent Sena meeting the party had authorised Uddhav to take final decision on Cabinet expansion and other issues. The Sena leader said Fadnavis after returning from his London visit is likely to meet Uddhav at his residence ‘Matoshree’ to discuss the Cabinet expansion issue.