Did a media project to “secularize” the Shiv Sena fail to take off?

A few days ago, an article about the “resurgent Sena” appeared in The Indian Express. For a while now, the mainstream media has made a habit of adding the term “resurgent” before the name of any party or political leader left licking wounds after the NaMo tsunami of 2014. It is possibly an automatic feature that has been incorporated into the word processing software used by media houses to accommodate their wishful thinking.

From talking about Uddhav donating proceeds from his photography exhibitions to describing his new found sense of matrutva (exact words) towards his humble party workers, the article had it all.

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Not to mention that the use of the phrase “coming of age” suggests  the possibility that this article was churned out from a draft circulated by media houses for a different dynast. Was it? Just kidding …

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The Indian Express article can hardly be seen in isolation. The same media sentiment surrounding Uddhav Thackeray is also amply visible in this HT Mumbai article.

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More admiration for Uddhav “overcoming the barrier” and “succeeding with second generation leaders”. And that one comes directly from the desk of Sujata Anandan, who has been the political editor of the Mumbai edition of the Hindustan Times. A few months ago, Ms. Anandan wrote much similarly about another naturally mild mannered dynast who has been getting smartly aggressive.

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We are not sure whether to laugh or to cry at these efforts. Of course, when the first few results of the BMC started rolling out on Feb 23 and it seemed for a while that the Sena would end up with a huge win, the same theme appeared in this now much mocked tweet of “journalist” Barkha Dutt.

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Soft spoken, passionate about photography … we have all the essentials here. As I said, we are not sure whether to laugh or to cry at these efforts.

Other “thought leaders” of Indian secularism had similar sentiments in mind.

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It is not hard to imagine what would have happened if the Shiv Sena had managed a big win in Mumbai. The Sena almost certainly would have gone through a process of “secularization” in the elite media. In fact, mild mannered photography lover Uddhav Thackeray appeared to be well prepared for this prospect when he stepped out in the media glare yesterday for what had been planned as his coming of age party…

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As we can see, evolution by means of natural selection is a slow process, but in desperate times, there are ways to speed it up significantly. Someone posted this photo on twitter of Uddhav from not so long ago.

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Meanwhile, as the mainstream media puts the onus of Indian secularism on the shoulders of the Shiv Sena, we can only assume that the “idea of India” shall remain on ventilator support.

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18 thoughts on “Did a media project to “secularize” the Shiv Sena fail to take off?

  1. I can’t wait to see their reaction on March 11.By the way,regarding phase 4,everybody seems to be confused and opinions are divided.No one seems to know how BJP performed.What is your assessment?

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    1. Good question. Mood on right wing is upbeat in general. Yday, many big RW “ground reporters” said that BJP was doing poorly initially. Towards the end of the day, they all said BJP has recovered quite well.

      To tell you the truth, I don’t fully believe this. There is a strong possibility that the RW biggies on twitter got messages from somewhere telling them not to demoralize the cadre. Note that I have no evidence to back this up. I am just guessing.

      I think BJP has performed poorly in Bundelkhand but very well in the East (towards Allahabad).

      Bundelkhand is very local and very small (19 seats) so I wouldn’t sweat it. We have seen actual votes counted in Maharashtra and so many places and somehow BJP has been winning these startling majorities of late. Demonetization seems to have struck a chord at some level. UP will be ours. Keep your chin up!

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  2. Bihar Congress Vice President Brajesh Pandey has resigned. Turns out he was running a Sharia-compliant sexual racket. Incidentally, this colourful character also happens to be the brother of Ravish Kumar – the hot secular celebrity, straight from the principal media outlet of the dynasty.

    Now we know why “Rubbish” Kumar was so worked up trying to hard sell the supposedly “ill effects” of demonetisation.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Dear Chaiwallah,

    I would like to share a few relevant tweets that I found on the Internet.

    Nupur Sharma asked “Has Social Media contributed to your personal growth? If yes, how?” I was very happy to see many “educated” persons write that they went from being indifferent Hindus to proud ones, that they realised the media tricks, etc. I am not giving a link because the replies are not in a single thread but are scattered in her twitter account @unsubtledesi

    Sandeep Kandian has this to say:

    He is quite right. Though the BJP contested only 23 out of 117 seats, it will be showcased as a BJP loss with calls of “Modi must rejine”, especially if (God forbid), the AAP wins. BTW one commentator called Pothu (pretty far down) says that the India Today-Axis poll showed the SAD+BJP winning Punjab. Is this true?

    I end with the ultimate display of sycophancy by Suryanarayan Ganesh, though off-topic:

    Liked by 1 person

      1. No, it’s NOT sarcasm! If you follow Suryanarayan Ganesh (and I sometimes see his tweets, if only for their hilarity), you would know that he is doormat No. 1. The only “improvement” I can suggest in his tweet is that he put “Bhagwan” in front of the wrong name! 🙂

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    1. Prof. Vidyasagar, This is why BJP needs to win UP on March 11. Even if it does, expect March 11 to be a repeat of Dec 8, 2013 when BJP won MP, Raj and CG, but media showed only AAP “sweeping” 2nd place in Delhi!

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  4. The ‘Sickular Brigade’ is busy counting anti-BJP votes gone to SS, Cong, NCP, MNS, SP, AIMIM and others. Soon you will find them claiming that the mandate is against BJP because more people voted in favour of BJP-mukt mumbai than votes in support !

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Honest and conscious Hindu should have voted for Shiv Sena. It is Shiv Sainiks who come on streets when Muslims attack Hindus. Not the wannabe Sharia Banker and assorted pseudo Hindus of the dalaal coterie of BJP.
    All that the sharia banker is doing is congressistion of BJP. Hindus should now be wary of Mr Mann Ki Baat and BJP. They do ‘khoon ki dalaali’ of Hindus, but have no intentions of doing anything on Hindu concerns.
    I am waiting to hear what has the Teresa Bhakt or BJP done on killings of Hindus in Kerala and Bengal.
    Oops I forgot. Its. ‘State Subject’

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  6. If Uddhav Thakre is mild mannered, soft spoken, Digvijay Singh must be his mentor. He wasted 25 years with snake which he could not crush and now he will need this snake to take care of mice crawling around him or he can repeat CPI’s experience in WB by merging with Congress.

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  7. The Shiv Sena seems to be facing a difficult choice. Either keep allying with BJP but in second fiddle role. Or try to become secular and hope to get few crumbs in some Gathbandhan.

    The Shiv Sena seems to have chosen the second option – to become secular. This is a very bad choice – like Sehwag trying to become Dravid – and it will fail badly. The core of the support base will desert Shiv Sena because the BJP is closer to them ideologically. Also the seculars will never warm up to Shiv Sena, no matter how much any Shiv Sena leader “comes of age”. The tiger cannot hope to become a donkey and still keep its support. This is exactly what has happened in the municipal elections and the writing is on the wall for the Shiv Sena. It should not feel bad though – its contributions will be remembered.

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  8. Having said all, the insecurity of shiv sena comes from seeing the past allies of BJP being swallowed by it and being reduced in strength considerably in their States ( AGP, HJC, JDS, JDU, and now BJD ,BSP too)
    But the point here is despite the BJP surge in Maharashtra sena held on to its strongholds like BMC and Thane unlike cong and NCP who got thrashed. I think this is primarily because of their organization rather than UT’s leadership.

    The important point here is any party which does not have a robust organization will melt down against BJP. The main reason for Congress’s slow death

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