A year after quitting the Congress, actor-politician Urmila Matondkar, who had contested from the Mumbai North Lok Sabha constituency on a Congress ticket, is all set to begin her second political innings with the Shiv Sena. Harshal Pradhan, a close aide of Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, confirmed to ANI that the actor will join the party in the chief minister’s presence on Tuesday.
Matondkar is one of the 12 whose names had been forwarded to Maharashtra Governor B S Koshyari by the Shiv Sena for nomination to the Legislative Council from the Governor’s quota. Koshyari is yet to approve the list of 12 names.
In the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Matondkar had lost to Gopal Shetty of the BJP by almost 4 lakh votes. Blaming Congress internal politics, she had resigned from the party in September 2019. She had said her efforts to work for the betterment of the party did not find support. She had said that her political and social sensibilities refused to allow vested interests in the party to use her as a means to fight petty in-house politics instead of working on a bigger goal in Mumbai Congress.
Matondkar can turn out to be an additional resource for the Shiv Sena to put out its messages on a national level. Party sources said Matondkar is a well-known face nationally, has a good social connect within Maharashtra and will become an additional voice for the party on various issues. Shiv Sena MP and Saamna’s executive editor Sanjay Raut Raut told the reporters on Monday that Matondkar will formally join Sena on Tuesday. Calling her Shiv Sainik Raut said her formal entry is expected to take place at Matoshree in the presence of Thackeray and his son and minister Aaditya Thackeray.
Recently, she had engaged with Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut, who compared Mumbai with Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, and criticised the Uddhav Thackeray government.