What Is India News Service
Wednesday, November 07, 2007


Shiv Sena (meaning Army of Shiva, referring to Shivaji) is a political party in India founded on June 19, 1966 by Bal Thackeray who was the president of the party for a long time.  


Now, Uday Thackeray is the Shiv Sena President.  It is a Hindu nationalist party, though it is strongly associated with Maratha identity.  In the 13th Lok Sabha (1999-2004), it had 15 (out of 545) members.  During that period, the party was part of the government coalition at the national level.  Manohar Joshi, a Shivsainik, was the Speaker of Lok Sabha 2002-2004. 

The party was formed to fight for the rights of native Maharashtrians.  It targeted South Indians living in Bombay and later Gujaratis and Muslims as it tried to propagate Bal Thackeray's idea that Bombay belonged to Maharashtrians only. 

Shiv Sena has its employment cell Shiv Udyog Sena.  Bharatiya Kamgar Sena ("Indian Worker's Army"), a labor union, is affiliated to the Shiv Sena.  The Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Sena ("All India Students' Army") is the student wing of SS.  Although the party is mainly based in Maharashtra, it has in recent years started to form branches all over India, but with limited success.  A sister party in Nepal, Nepal Shiv Sena, has also been founded.

Maharashtra has always been the main stronghold of the party.  The party has ruled the state in coalition with the Bharatiya Janata Party.  The SS-BJP did however lose the 2004 state assembly election.  SS is now the main opposition party in the state. The BJP-SS combine governs the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation.  Traditionally the main strongholds of SS have been Mumbai and the Konkan coastal areas.  However, in the 2004 Lok Sabha elections the result was reversed.  SS made inroads in the interior parts of the state, while suffering losses in Mumbai.


The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has viewed the Tehelka exposé on Gujarat riots, aired on a private news channel recently, and is likely to take a decision on the future course of action on Thursday. (Nhrc Views Tehelka Tapes , Hindu, Correspondent or Reporter, Nov 02, 2007)

If murmurs of protest from the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal leadership in Punjab are any indicator, the BJP appears to be following a plan through which it is all set to alienate yet another partner from its much depleted National Democratic . . . . (Is Bjp Alienating Another Ally? , Hindu, Sarabjit Pandher, Oct 26, 2007)

Tehelka on Thursday claimed that it had “irrefutable” evidence that the killings of Muslims post-Godhra train carnage in Gujarat was “not a spontaneous swell of anger but a genocide” planned and executed by top functionaries of the. . . (Tehelka Blames It On Sangh Parivar, Modi, Hindu, Correspondent or Reporter, Oct 26, 2007)

The Congress lashed out against the Left Front, a key ally at the Centre, for the food riots in West Bengal and questioned its commitment towards the poor. (Cong Raps Left For Food Riots In West Bengal , Pioneer, Correspondent or Reporter, Oct 23, 2007)

Whatever the ultimate fate of the Indo-US nu-clear deal, the contentious debate between the Congress-led coalition and the Left parties that support it has had two consequences. (Coalition Constraints, Tribune, S. Nihal Singh, Oct 23, 2007)

Backtracking from his earlier stance in support of the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal, Shiv Sena Supremo Bal Thackeray on Sunday voiced his opposition to the deal and came down heavily on the UPA Government for its pro- America stance. (Now, Sena Finds Fault With N-Deal, Upa’S Us Tilt, Indian Express, Correspondent or Reporter, Oct 22, 2007)

The Shiv Sena’s much-touted mega morcha to Mantralaya against rising prices of essential commodities turned out to be total flop with only about 2,500 Sena women turning up for it. (Sena Women Rally Against Price Rise , The Economic Times, Correspondent or Reporter, Oct 12, 2007)

The Supreme Court has rightly taken the Karunanidhi government to task for organising a bandh in Tamil Nadu on October 1 despite its strong warning against holding it. (Hostage To Bandh, Tribune, V. Eshwar Anand, Oct 11, 2007)

Mayawati's call to divide UP into three states is apt. Uttar Pradesh is a monster state with a population of 166 million. (Divide And Rule, Times of India, Editorial, The Times of India, Oct 11, 2007)

Continuing his efforts to mend BJP’s ties with its allies ahead of a possible Lok Sabha poll, Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha L K Advani met Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal at his Prithviraj Road residence on Sunday evening. (Advani’S Bouquet, Party’S Brickbats For Ally Akali Dal, Indian Express, Correspondent or Reporter, Oct 09, 2007)

On October 2, we celebrated Mahatma Gandhi’s birth anniversary. It would be appropriate to ponder over what remains of his legacy and who can justifiably claim to be its beneficiaries. (Peace Angel Speaks Again, Hindustan Times, Correspondent or Reporter, Oct 08, 2007)

Politics prefers soft hands. Why have Indian politicians suddenly started playing with knuckledusters? Democracy functions best when handled gently. (Soft Hands, Asian Age, M.J. Akbar, Oct 08, 2007)

Maharashtra chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh could be in trouble again soon. An indication to this effect was available after Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s return from her foreign visit. (Vilasrao May Be In Fresh Trouble, Asian Age, Correspondent or Reporter, Oct 08, 2007)

Dubbing the controversy over the Sethusamudram Project as an issue of 'Ram verses Rome', the Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi has challenged the UPA government to go ahead with the multi-crore ship canal venture without damaging the Ram Setu. ('Give Sethu Project Contract To Gujarat', New Indian Express, Correspondent or Reporter, Oct 06, 2007)

Downplaying the rift between the Shiv Sena and BJP in Maharashtra, Sena executive president Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday said the alliance was very much intact and would definitely be contesting the 2009 state Assembly polls together. (‘Sena And Bjp Glued By Bond Of Hindutva’, Asian Age, Correspondent or Reporter, Oct 06, 2007)

Making the forthcoming election a battle between ‘Ram and Rome’, Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi on Thursday asked every Indian to say Ram was born, so loudly that even “Italy hears it”. (It's A Battle Between Ram & Rome: Modi, Singapore Times, Correspondent or Reporter, Oct 05, 2007)

More by coincidence than design, the Congress, by making Mr Rahul Gandhi the general secretary of the party, has tried to capitalise on the increasingly recognised global success of India's youth power. But no one with a sense of history has . . . . (Family First, Nation Later, Pioneer, Balbir K Punj, Oct 05, 2007)

Maharashtra chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh on Thursday appeared unperturbed by the campaign by a section of the PCC and AICC leaders for his removal and said he could take up the long-awaited state Cabinet expansion after the ‘shradh’ period. (Maharashtra Cm Talks Of Cabinet Expansion, Singapore Times, Correspondent or Reporter, Oct 05, 2007)

In his last days, B.R. Ambedkar wanted to wind up the Scheduled Caste Federation and form a broadbased political party that would include the poor and the oppressed across religions and castes. (Fifty Years Of Fragmentation, Indian Express, Rakshit Sonawane, Oct 03, 2007)

The Supreme Court would have done well not to suggest the imposition of President’s rule on Tamil Nadu. (Sc Right To Rule Bandh Illegal , The Economic Times, Editorial, Economic Times, Oct 03, 2007)


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