'Kingmaker' to 'King' of Maharashtra: Meet CM Eknath Shinde
Eknath Shinde, the rebel Shiv Sena leader, has now become the next chief minister of Maharashtra with the backing of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Shinde executed a crisis of sorts for the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government by revolting alongside more than three dozen party MLAs. Meet Shinde, who defied the speculative 'kingmaker' tag to emerge as the 'king'.
Cabinet minister and four-term MLA
Shinde is the current Shiv Sena Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) from Kopri-Pachpakhadi (Vidhan Sabha constituency) of Maharashtra. He served as state cabinet minister for PWD (MSRDC, Public Undertaking) in the Uddhav Thackeray-led MVA government. He has been elected consecutively for four terms in the 288-member Maharashtra Legislative Assembly in 2004, 2009, 2014, and 2019.
What do we know about his childhood?
Shinde was born in Satara on February 9, 1964. He moved to Thane at a young age and attended Mangala High School and Junior College through the 11th grade. He had to drop out of school and work to support his family. In 1980, he was swayed by Shiv Sena supremo Balasaheb Thackeray and became a Sainik for the party.
A devoted Shiv Sainik who rose to prominence quickly
He participated in various agitations after joining Sena, including the Maharashtra-Karnataka agitation for the status of Belgauvi, for which he was also imprisoned. Shinde (58), a former auto-rickshaw driver in Thane, rose fast to become a significant Sena leader in the Thane-Palghar region after entering politics and is noted for his combative attitude to problems of public concern.
How did his political career begin?
He got an opportunity to run for Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC) corporator in 1997, which he won with a large majority. He was elected Leader of the House in the TMC in 2001. He held the position until 2004. As a TMC leader, he was also concerned with the general development and well-being of the Thane district.
Shinde emerged as a Sena leader during Balasaheb's tenure
Shinde was elected Thane assembly member during the tenure of Balasaheb Thackeray in 2004 and led Shiv Sena's Thane district. In the ensuing Assembly elections in 2009, 2014, and 2019, he was successful. Following the 2014 elections, he was chosen as the Shiv Sena legislative party's leader and, later, as the Maharashtra Assembly's Leader of Opposition.
Shinde was in charge of vital PWD and Health ministries
When Shiv Sena opted to join the state government, he took oath as the Minister for Public Works Department (Public Undertakings) within a month and then added the Health and Family Welfare Ministry to his portfolio in January 2019.
Who all are in his family?
Eknath Shinde is married to Lata Shinde. His son, Dr. Shrikant Shinde, is an orthopedic surgeon. Shrikant was elected as a Member of Parliament to the Lok Sabha from the Kalyan constituency defeating the NCP's Anand Paranjape, who had defected from the Shiv Sena, and Raju Patil of the MNS. Shrikant was given the Sena ticket by Uddhav Thackeray.Share this timeline