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With Aaditya’s poll fray, Sena hopes to see ‘achche din’

MUMBAI: Aaditya Thackeray's decision to contest the Maharashtra Assembly polls has the potential to bring in "achche din" for the Shiv Sena, which over past few years has been forced to play second fiddle to senior ally BJP, says a Sena leader.
Aaditya, the 27-year-old elder son of Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, on Monday said he will contest the assembly elections scheduled for October 21.
With this, he will become the first member of the Thackeray clan ever to contest an election.
According to a party source, the Yuva Sena chief is a voracious reader, has the ability to hold his own in debates about the metropolis and the state, and has a connect with the grassroot Sainiks.
"All these factors strengthen his appeal," he said.
Aaditya Thackeray joined politics in 2009 and since then has been actively working in the organisation, building a cadre of new young leaders by being in the background, Harshal Pradhan, a close aide of the Sena president, told PTI.
"In the last ten years, he travelled across the state to understand and grasp the issues on the ground. Hence, he decided to break the family tradition of not contesting elections," Pradhan said.
He is the "only leader in the country below the age of 30" who has already toured the entire state through his 'Jan Ashirwad' yatra and addressed over 75 'Aaditya sansads' (two-way communication with youth), Yuva Sena secretary Varun Sardesai claimed.
The other youth leaders (of other parties) in the country are over 40 years of age, Sardesai, who is Aaditya Thackeray's cousin, pointed out.
"All the data that he has collected during these extensive tours is being used to prepare Sena's manifesto. With Aaditya in the fray, the Sena's 'achche din' (good days) are all set to come," he said.
The Shiv Sena has been projecting him as the chief ministerial face if the party bags the highest number of seats in the next month's Assembly polls.
In the 2014 Assembly polls, the Sena won 63 out of the total 288 seats, second only to BJP's 122, with both parties then contesting separately.
The Congress and NCP had then promised support and wanted the Sena to stake claim for the chief minister's post.
"But Uddhavji declined saying he wouldn't compromise on the issue of his party's Hindutva ideology for the sake of power," a source in the Sena recalled.
Senior Sena leaders like Eknath Shinde and Subhash Desai also persuaded the party president for the need to have somebody from the family in the state Assembly, looking Read More – Source

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