MUMBAI: Almost three months after the party lost in the Assembly elections, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena(MNS) chief Raj Thackeray is getting tough and is trying to assign responsibilities for his party members.
In an unprecedented move, Raj has asked party officials not to carry their mobile phones when they come to attend the party conclave on Friday at the Ravindra Natya Mandir here. Raj will address the concluding session of the day-long conclave, which will introspect on the reasons for the party’s defeat and chalk out its future strategies.
“We have been strictly instructed not to carry cell phones to the conclave. There will also be entry passes with embossed bar codes to monitor our movements. We will not be allowed to come out of the hall till the meeting gets over,” an MNS official from South Mumbai said.
Around 500 party officials from the city, including chiefs of the party’s various wings, are expected to attend the conclave.
Raj has announced an organisational reshuffle after some of his close aides rebelled against him during the last two months. His close confidants, former MLAs Pravin Darekar, Vasant Gite and Ramesh Patil joined the BJP complaining that they were being neglected and humiliated in the party.
According to an MNS leader, as a first step towards re-constituting the party organisation, Raj has initiated the appointment of new office-bearers for the Mumbai North Lok Sabha constituency. However, it elicited a cold response from the workers as they refused to work under a coterie of his family friends. “Very few workers appeared for the interviews for the party posts in North Mumbai. They were reluctant to take up any responsibility till they were given operational freedom,” the leader said.
MNS general secretary and spokesperson Nitin Sardesai, though, failed to respond to messages seeking comments on the issue.