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'Rangeela girl' Urmila Matondkar Shiv Sena's pick for upper house

11:42 PM Oct 30, 2020 | Sanjay Jog

Mumbai: Rangeela girl and Marathi Mulgi Urmila Matondkar is Shiv Sena’s pick for the Maharashtra Legislative Council from the Governor’s quota. This was confirmed by Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut who said party president and Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has spoken to Urmila and she has agreed to be the Sena’s nominee.

The glamour quotient that Urmila brings will be a shot in the arm for the Sena and yet another setback for its ally, the Congress. Urmila had contested the Lok Sabha election on a Congress ticket but lost to BJP MP Gopal Shetty. Thereafter, Urmila quit the party citing internal bickering and factionalism. She had steered away from active politics since then.

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However, Urmila came into her own by joining the raging feud between Kangana Ranaut and Sena MP Sanjay Raut; Ranaut had likened Mumbai to Pakistan Occupied Kashmir and levelled serious charges against the city police in connection with the actor Sushant Singh Rajput death case.

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Urmila had dubbed Ranaut 'Rudaali', a professional mourner, as they are called in Rajasthan. Or, a cry baby!

The 'Rangeela' actor had accused Kangana of unnecessarily playing the victim and woman card. She further advised the 'Queen' actor to fight the drug menace from her home state Himachal Pradesh.

Shiv Sena sees in Urmila a fighter and a mascot of Maharashtra pride. She can be the best bet for the Shiv Sena and help it consolidate its Marathi Manoos vote bank; she can also also help the party spread its wings in non-Marathi speaking pockets ahead of the election to the BMC in 2022.

A close associate of Urmila told the Free Press Journal, ''Urmila received the first call from the Shiv Sena and then from the Congress. However, she chose the Shiv Sena as the access to the leadership won’t be an issue, unlike that in the Congress. She was also convinced that the time is opportune for accepting the nomination, when the Shiv Sena is being targeted by the BJP and and others like Ranaut.’’

By nominating Urmila to the upper house, the Shiv Sena leadership proposes to make her a part of the party’s outreach plan. ‘’She is trendy and educated and can connect with both people residing in slums and in high rises,’’ said a Shiv Sena youth leader.

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