In the 90s, Shiv Sena founder Balasaheb Thackeray helped rehabilitate displaced Kashmiri Pandits, driven out of their homeland by militants, in different parts of Maharashtra
Even as former Maharashtra Chief Minister and Shiv Sena leader Uddhav Thackeray could not join the Congress 3,570 km long Bharat Jodo Yatra, now the Thackerays have stepped out of the state and have decided to send party MP Sanjay Raut to walk with Rahul Gandhi in Jammu.
Raut declared this on Twitter on Thursday. “Will be joining the March of Love, Friendship & Unity with Rahul Gandhi at the Bharat Jodo Yatra. Shall walk for the Unity of Nation on January 20 from Jammu, – a place that Shiv Sena Supremo Balasaheb Thackeray had a special bonding with. Jai Hind, Jai Maharashtra!,” he said.
It must be noted that a delegation of Kashmiri Pandit, who were driven out of their homeland by militants in the 1990s, met Sena Pramukh Balasaheb Thackeray in Maharashtra. The leader, also known as Hindu Hriday Samrat had thrown open all the higher-technical-engineering institutions for them in Maharashtra helping them find a second home in Mumbai and Pune.
Earlier, Uddhav Thackeray’s son Aditya Thackeray had joined the Yatra in Maharashtra, when it entered the state in November last year.
Even Shiv Sena (Uddhav Thackeray) Rajya Sabha MP Priyanka Chaturvedi had joined the yatra in Delhi on January 3, when it resumed for the second leg of the yatra.
Uddhav had not joined the yatra in Maharashtra citing his poor health.
The yatra has till date passed from states like Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Haryana and Union Territory of Delhi.
The yatra is currently passing through Punjab and will enter Himachal Pradesh on January 19 for a day before entering Jammu and Kashmir.
The yatra will conclude in Srinagar on January 30 with hoisting the national flag.
The Congress has given invitations to 21 like-minded parties to join the concluding of the yatra in Kashmir.
The Congress has invited parties like TMC, JDU, Shiv Sena, TDP, National Conference, Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party, DMK, CPI, CPM, JMM, RJD, RLSP, HAM, PDP, MDMK, VCK, IUML, KSM and RSP.
RJD Supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav, his son and Bihar Deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav, NC’s Farroq Abdullah and his son Omar Abdullah have been invited for the yatra. The Congress has also invited Sharad Yadav.