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Eknath Shinde CM

Why BJP Backed Sena’s Eknath Shinde For CM’s Post

Former Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis sprung a surprise by announcing that Shiv Sena rebel leader Eknath Shinde would be the new Maharashtra CM. However, this is not the ‘large-heartedness’ of the BJP, as Shinde believes, but a masterstroke that the BJP has played to cut to size the stature of Shiv Sena founder late Bal Thackeray’s son Uddhav and grandson Aaditya in the party and the state politics. “With Shinde at the helm of affairs in the state as well in the party with the backing of 39 MLAs, the significance of Uddhav Thackeray in the party will drop significantly,” said Jay Prakash Singh, a senior political analyst. He added that the move will help Fadnavis and the BJP garner sympathy votes during the upcoming civic elections for letting go of the CM’s chair for the sake of Hindutva.  Fadnavis will be very much in the driver’s seat as deputy CM and this is the wish of the party high command. Fadnavis has declared, “BJP is the single largest party in the legislature… I will ensure the smooth functioning of the government.” However, is causing embarrassment to the Thackerays the only reason why Fadnavis passed on the CM’s chair to Shinde? “Once bitten, twice shy!” Singh asserts. “Fadnavis wants to play safe as he doesn’t want to face a situation similar to that of 2019. NCP leader Ajit Pawar went back to the party fold less than 48 hours after rebelling. What’s the guarantee that the rebel Shiv Sena MLAs won’t return to the Thackeray camp in the coming days/months?”
Raj Thackeray

Raj Thackeray Helps BJP Woo North Indians, Disturb Sena’s Vote Bank

It can be announced over loudspeakers now that the BJP won the first round of battle with the Shiv Sena. Rest assured, the MNS chief won’t object to it as the credit for the BJP’s stupendous feat goes not just to the party’s astute political tactics but also to Raj Thackeray.  According to experts, the BJP is fully aware that no other party uses the Hindutva card better than them, and that it is the first choice for people following that ideology. Therefore, it gave Raj Thackeray enough room to perform his stunts. Lapping up the opportunity to resurrect his outfit that was virtually becoming irrelevant in Maharashtra politics, the MNS chief managed to confuse Shiv Sena workers by invoking Hindu Hriday Samrat, the late Balasaheb Thackeray. However, seeing Thackeray’s rising stature the BJP was quick to cut him down to size. Political analysts assert that the BJP won’t allow any non-BJP leader to become the torchbearer of Hindutva. Hence, the party’s MP from Kaiserganj in Uttar Pradesh Brij Bhushan Singh was brought into the picture. Singh warned Thackeray that he will not be allowed to enter Ayodhya until he apologizes to all North Indians with folded hands. Thus, along with disturbing the Shiv Sena’s vote bank, the BJP earned the goodwill of North Indians — all thanks to Raj Thackeray.

Baba Siddique’s Iftar Do, Irks Salman-SRK Fans Over Too Much Ado!

Former Congress MLA Baba Siddique’s annual iftar party in suburban Bandra has always been a star-studded affair. Be it at Sheesha Sky Lounge on Linking Road from where it started, to the iconic Mehboob Studio at Hill Road, and from 2010 onwards at the Taj Lands End at Bandstand, the party has seen regular attendance from the Khans of Bollywood. However, due to the Covid situation, Siddique couldn’t host the annual ritual these past two years. This year, with Covid restrictions withdrawn from April 2, an enthusiastic Siddique — like always — invited both the Khans, but ended up annoying their fans. Shah Rukh Khan made his first media appearance after a long time. The superstar graciously greeted the media but wasn’t feeling comfortable posing for photographs. However, Siddiqui, who was escorting the actor inside the venue, forcibly stopped him and made him pose. While SRK maintained his calm, he looked extremely uncomfortable. This irked netizens who slammed Siddique. Likewise, while seeing off Salman Khan, Siddique got too close for comfort and even placed his hand on Salman’s head as if he’s a kid who doesn’t know how to sit in a car. Interestingly, it’s both the Khans who had made Siddique’s iftar bash a national event by embracing each other after a feud following an ugly spat at Salman’s then-girlfriend Katrina Kaif’s birthday.

UP Congress Crumbling With Priyanka Gandhi’s Fumbling On Ladki Hoon… Poll Strategy Bumbling

After the crushing defeat in the state assembly election, the party high command asked Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee President Ajay Kumar Lallu to put in his papers. With no new state chief and with Priyanka Gandhi Vadra keeping away from Lucknow, Congressmen in the state are running around directionless, like a brood of headless chickens. A senior party leader and member of the AICC told, “The organization that we had built by fielding candidates on all seats is crumbling now. Moreover, Priyanka has not even looked back at the party in the post-poll situation.” He also revealed the reason why, unlike the other four states that went to polls earlier this year, the party adopted the ‘Ladki Hoon, Lad Sakti Hoon‘ campaign in UP. “No strong candidate was willing to contest on our ticket. The few we had were the ones denied tickets by their respective parties who came, not out of choice but, by compulsion.” Another leader, however, claimed the scenario will be different in the 2024 general elections. “The party can win back the support of Muslims, Brahmins, and BSP’s voters who are looking for a new alternative,” he said, adding that now its only poll strategist Prashant Kishor who can save the crumbling state unit, strengthen the organization, and make the party politically relevant.
AAP Mumbai

With BMC Polls Deferred Will It Be Advantage AAP?

The upcoming BMC elections will not be an ‘aam’ municipal referendum by any means. The BJP is determined to put all that it has at stake, to level scores with long-time friend-turned-foe, the Shiv Sena. The Sena is trying all the tricks of the trade to retain its Marathi Asmita and control over Aamchi Mumbai. The NCP is looking to expand its Mumbai base at the cost of senior partner Congress’ vote bank. The grand old party is also using all its might to stay relevant in the politics of the very city where it was born. Amidst all the scheming and planning that the city is silently witnessing, the AAP is using the grace period, by postponement of elections, to actively strengthen its organisation. AAP, the fourth largest party, has formed teams of devoted workers and volunteers in almost 100 wards.  Its campaign will highlight the pathetic state of Mumbai’s roads, corruption in BMC and announce its plans for the health and education sectors. “We’ll fight to win and are getting tremendous support from Mumbaikars. People are really frustrated and fed up with these parties and their dirty politics. The only clean alternative they have is in AAP,” says Ruben Mascarenhas, the working president of AAP Mumbai. AAP is betting on youngsters and a majority of its candidates will be under 40 years old.

Bulldozer Baba’s Smile Masks Disaffection For Babua, Sets The Tone For UP Politics Come 2024

A section of the media is gung-ho about the pointedly brief interaction between first-time MLAs, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and opposition leader Akhilesh Yadav in the Uttar Pradesh assembly on Monday (March 28). While both exchanged smiles and the CM even patted the SP supremo’s arm, body language exhibited uneasiness and awkwardness. According to an expert, Yogi didn’t even look Akhilesh in the eye and there was a sense of gawkiness in his smile. To conclude that all’s well between the leaders will be wrong. In fact, the CM shook hands with the SP leader and even shrugged him off – at the same instant. A senior BJP leader from Lucknow confirmed this on condition of anonymity and told, “Being a sage, Baba may forgive Akhilesh Yadav. However, SP leaders know that just like PM Modi, even CM Yogi doesn’t forget things.” He added that the bulldozers will work overtime now to raze all the inflated egos of netas who thought very highly of themselves. SP leaders claim Akhilesh greeted the CM out of basic protocol and courtesy. The BJP too knows the reason why Akhileshji gave up his parliamentary seat. He’ll finish the unfinished business in the 2024 general elections and will make life difficult for the ruling party in the subsequent state assemblies.

Sena Reins In Union Minister Narayan Rane & Sons For crossing the Laxman Rekha

Frequenting courts and police stations may seem inept and despicable to any simple aam aadmi. However, if you are Narayan Tatu Rane, such things don’t bother you. Haggling with law-enforcement agencies since the 1960s — while running a poultry shop in suburban Chembur – the bold, bindaas, Union minister had mastered the craft. However, the arrogance effused by suddenly gaining power after losing all hope has landed the Ranes in a profound mess. While leaders and political parties were critical of the Shiv Sena ever since its formation, Rane crossed the Lakshman Rekha by targeting CM Uddhav Thackeray and his minister son Aaditya in the MVA government. “Soon after being made a minister at the Centre, Rane began making personal remarks on the Thackeray family and started calling them names,” said Ravindra Ambekar, a senior political analyst and founder of Max Maharashtra. Ambekar added, “As Shiv Sena is in power and has the responsibility of maintaining the law and order situation, it’s dealing with him legally.” As people don’t sympathize with Rane, his actions may cause harm to the BJP’s image. “Therefore, the BJP may even ask him to compromise with the Thackerays,” feels Ambekar.

BMC Polls 2022: Congress, SP, AIMIM In A Fix As Nawab Becomes 'Maalik' Of Anti-BJP North Indian, Muslim Votes

Exposing ‘farijiwada’ in the Aryan Khan drugs case bit by bit from his Kurla home-office, NCP leader and senior minister in the Uddhav Thackeray cabinet Nawab Malik made national headlines. Soon, erstwhile BJP CM Devendra Fadnavis and another Mumbai office-bearer came under Malik’s radar. The scrap dealer from Gonda in UP has incessantly taken on the mighty BJP. With his Main Jhukunga Nahi attitude, Malik has forged an instant connection with young Muslims. “…And this is bad news for the Congress, SP, and the AIMIM. Along with being the guardian minister of Gondia and Parbhani, he’s the minister of minority development, Wakf board, skill development, and entrepreneurship. Abu Azmi and the Owaisi brothers don’t stand a chance against Malik as he’s in power,” says a political analyst. It’s party supremo Sharad Pawar’s dimaag and this Miya Bhai’s daring has turned this politically irrelevant party into a key player for the BMC elections. “Malik’s influence on North Indian voters will also help his party if, SP fails to form a government in UP. Nearly 50 seats in Mumbai count on the majority north Indian vote. Plus, there are 50 more such seats where they play a dominant role,” he asserted, adding that with the MVA rallying behind him, a mighty Malik will gravely hurt the prospects parties relying on Muslim and North Indian votes.

UP Elections 2022: It's 'Mission Accomplished' For Congress And Priyanka Gandhi

The seven-phase Mahabharat between the ruling BJP and the Samajwadi Party in the Hindi heartland has come to an end. While most TV channels are predicting that the Yogi Adityanath-led BJP will sail through the majority mark easily, quite a few web channels believe Mulayam’s son will rise again in Lucknow. However, amidst all the hullabaloo, it’s Congress that has emerged as the real winner. The party, which was nowhere in the race, contested all the 403 seats for the first time in 30 years. However, it is not just the 2022 assembly election that Congress is looking at. “Priyanka Gandhi’s charisma complemented with her emphasis on real issues helped us garner massive support from the youth, women, and minorities. As we have contested all the seats, our vote share will certainly increase. Moreover, it has helped us resuscitate and strengthen the organization by activating followers at the grass-root level,” said Dr Shaukat Khan, a senior Congress leader, adding that the hard work done now will surely bear fruits for the party in the 2024 general elections. Poll analysts proclaim that Congress has focused on 25 seats. And if Chhattisgarh Chief Minister and Special Supervisor In-charge of Congress in Uttar Pradesh Bhupesh Baghel’s intuition of hung assembly comes true, the grand old party with a mere 12-18 seats can emerge as the kingmaker.

Kiran Bharti and Shaukat Khan

Amid Religious Polarisation Priyanka Gandhi Bets On Three-Decade-Old Hindu-Muslim Love Story

With polling for UP state assemblies due in Purvanchal and Awadh, polarisation on basis of religion and caste is at its peak. However, within all the hate, a fragrance of love is in the air too. A three-decade-old Hindu-Muslim romance is winning hearts of people in Bahraich district where Muslims, OBCs, SCs constitute over 50% of the electorate. Kiran Bharti, a Hindu-Dalit, and Shaukat Khan’s love story started in Delhi University’s North Campus in 1992. “I was then the secretary of the Delhi University Students’ Union,” Shaukat told, adding that he always wanted to get into electoral politics. However, in 2012, BSP supremo Mayawati advised him to let Kiran be the face and asked him to work from behind the scenes. Since then the duo has bagged the majority of Muslim and SC votes in Balha. In 2022, Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi too fell for their love saga. Sources in the UP Congress claim Kiran and Shaukat’s jodi was hand-picked by Priyanka. “She has played a masterstroke. The party that was never in the fight is now the prime challenger in the region,” a local BJP leader confessed, adding that the couple’s influence is seen in the adjoining seats as well. “No matter which party they contest from, they’re always the first choice of Muslim and SC voters,” he claimed.


Editor’s Note: Big Punch In Small Pack

It is the Third Anniversary of Short Post and as a news media startup launched during the Covid-19 pandemic it certainly feels better than good to find ourselves where we are today. Here, I must cite the unstinted support of our seasoned contributors, all senior editors in the country, who brought a great degree of maturity and sagacity to the Short Post newsroom. But for them, our tagline “Authentic Gossip”, an Oxymoron, would not have matured viably. Our user numbers may be small but our stories have created the desired impact among people who matter — decision makers and influencers. We offer a big punch in a small pack and Short Post with its 225-word stories has been punching above its weight category. Having posted close to 3,000 stories in the last 36 months, Short Post, I feel, is an idea whose time has come.
And this is vindicated by our two marquee advertisers – IDFC FIRST Bank and ICICI Lombard. Both believed in our story and have supported us from Day one. A big thank you to both.
If you look at the media landscape – print, TV and digital — it is a mixed bag. There are job losses as some outfits have closed down while a lucky few were bailed out by large corporate houses. Yes, there is a lot of action in the digital space. However, the entry of corporate houses has raised the question of independence of news media outfits. Sadly, there are just a handful of independent media outfits in the country that are highly respected for their neutrality. At Short Post, our credo is not to take sides, prejudge issues or be biased but, informing readers of behind-the-scenes happenings. In essence, Short Post strives to be a neutral editorial platform — neither anti-establishment nor pro-establishment.
As I said last year, disruptions in the media world are moving at a fast and furious pace. Technology is playing a very big role in how content is generated and consumed. But, we are neither alarmed nor perturbed as it is all a part of the evolution process. What gives us comfort is that AI is unable to create original gossipy content. And that is the news arena where we have achieved a distinction.