Shiv Sena executive president got behind the wheels of his luxury car after a long hiatus and drove his family to Sena Bhawan through hordes of cheering supporters
Needless to say it was an eventful day for the Shiv Sena. Things began on a dull note at Matoshree, with some preliminary reports indicating that the saffron party was lagging behind. Even in Thane, the opening numbers weren't great.
Victory is ours: Uddhav Thackeray, sons Aaditya and Tejas, and wife
Rashmi, celebrate outside the Thackeray residence, Matoshree, in Bandra
(East). Pic/Pradeep Dhivar
However, with every passing hour, the situation kept changing. And then suddenly, many lanes in the city woke up to roars of motorbikes, all brandishing Sena flags.
By afternoon, it was clear that though Bal Thackeray's party had lost about 10 seats compared to the 2007 elections, it still managed to remain the single largest party in the 227-seat BMC, with 75 wards in its kitty.
Alliance partner BJP gained two seats more from the previous edition and reached atally of 31. The RPI-A was the biggest loser, reduced to a single corporator from 3 in 2007.
Growing in number
However, by afternoon the crowd outside Matoshree, opposite the MHADA headquarters, had increased considerably and more police personnel were called in to handle the crowd.
Slowly, all the top leaders of the party started showing up at the Thackeray residence. After the two consecutive defeats in the Lok Sabha and assembly polls, the party had had little to celebrate about. This time they were going all out.
At around 5 pm, executive president Uddhav Thackeray finally decided to emerge and was greeted by a rousing welcome from the supporters. After a long hiatus, Uddhav decided to get behind the wheels of his luxury car with his eldest son Aaditya in the front, and wife Rashmi and youngest son Tejas in the backseat. It was a moment that the lensmen gathered at Matoshree were not going to miss out on.
Uddhav and Aaditya both appeared excited, talking to supporters and media persons, and accepting congratulatory messages from everyone. The family then left for Sena Bhawan
Wavin' flag: Supporters rejoice as Shiv Sena gets ready to assume the
BMC's reigns for another term. Pic/Sameer Markande
Colour of the day
The building was covered in saffron colour -- from the flags to the dresses of party supporters, even the colour of the gulal was saffron. With the Shiv Sena geet being played the loudest, supporters even picked up their leaders on their shoulders.
For Uddhav it was a moment that he was finding hard to describe. While talking to the media, he asked them to relieve him as soon as possible, so that he could go and meet his supporters, on his day to remember.
We have worked for Mumbai and that's why the people have voted for us. We would keep doing the developmental work, because that's what we want to do and have been elected for
� Uddhav Thackeray
The work done by BMC has been rewarded by the Mumbaikar. We talk development not politics
� Aaditya Thackeray
I had asked God to let my party win 31 seats and we did it finally. This victory is attributed to the development work of the alliance in the BMC
� Raj Purohit, city BJP chief
We accept our defeat in the BMC elections. We had formed the alliance expecting that it would help us get