Mumbai: Actor-turned-politician Urmila Matondkar is expected to join the Shiv Sena on Monday. Matondkar was recently nominated by the Shiv Sena to the legislative council from the Governor’s quota. She is likely to be tasked with reaching out to Mumbaikars, given her mass appeal and rapport with slumdwellers as well as those living in plush colonies, ahead of the ensuing elections to the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation, slated for 2022.
Shiv Sena insiders told The Free Press Journal that Matondkar’s entry would be crucial, given that the party has firmed up its plan to draw youths and the working class, apart from consolidating its traditional vote bank in the city. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had already announced on the eve of Maha Vikas Aghadi government’s first anniversary that the Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress would contest the BMC elections in unison, to take on the BJP, which has already announced Mission Mumbai 2022 with a resolve to end the Shiv Sena’s reign over the civic body.
Matondkar had contested the Lok Sabha elections on a Congress ticket against BJP candidate Gopal Shetty from North Mumbai, but was defeated. Thereafter, expressing serious concerns over the internal bickering and factionalism in the party, she quit the party in September 20 19, five months after she had joined. She had accused "vested interests in the party" of allegedly using her "as a means to fight petty in-house politics, instead of working on a bigger goal in Mumbai Congress".
However, in her resignation letter, Matondkar had said she would continue to work for people with honesty and dignity and thanked all those who had helped and supported her. Thereafter, she had distanced herself from the scene for a while.
She resurfaced when she took on actor Kangana Ranaut when the latter likened Mumbai to Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and attacked Mumbai Police in connection with the Sushant Singh Rajput death case.gh Rajput death case.