By the BMC polls are almost 11 months away, the Shiv Sena is planning to attract Gujarati voters. A month later arranging a “jalebi- fafda” function for the Gujaratis, the party has now organized the Raas Garba program for the community.
Shiv Sena has planned the raas-Garba program on February 7 in rural Malad and strives to stretch out to maximum Gujarati voters in the northern outskirts. The majority of Gujarati voters in Mumbai are regarded as a section of the BJP vote bank. The Shiv Sena, last month had planned a reach-out program with the motto “Jalebi ne Fafda, Uddhav Thackeray Aapda” (Jalebi and Fafda, Uddhav Thackeray is ours).
Now the Shiv Sena is continuing to operate a raas-Garba program to draw Gujarati voters. Twenty-one Gujrati businessmen are also anticipated to join Shiv Sena at this event. “In any Gujrati household, we play raas-Garba at every family function. Every party has the right to reach out to voters in their own way and grow. So we are also trying to reach out to our voters,” Hemraj Shah, Shiv Sena leader and organizer of the program said.
As per calculations, there are about 30 lakh Gujaratis in Mumbai, who can instantly influence the poll result in about 55 wards in the BMC. Barring 2017, Shiv Sena has fought the last several BMC elections in an alliance with the BJP. After uniting with the Congress and NCP, the Shiv Sena is attempting to create incursions into the critical vote bank.
The BJP, meantime, has announced the program as an election catch. “The Shiv Sena retains different communities only when elections are approaching. After the elections, they gave up Hindutva. They were quiet on the Tandav problem and now they are silent on the Sharjil Usmani controversy as well. Gujarati community has traditionally stood with the BJP because we keep our words. Whereas, Shivsena now has an image of a backstabber. No one will get fooled by this anymore,” BJP Spokesperson said.