Sanjay Raut, the Rajya Sabha MP from Shiv Sena and Editor in Chief of Saamana- the mouthpiece of the party, is using the newspaper to settle the personal scores and criticize BJP. In an article written in Saamana, Raut sarcastically wrote that ‘he is happy that BJP is concerned about Indira Gandhi’. The former Prime Minister whom the BJP wanted to remove from history books has become dearer to them, wrote Raut.
One does not know whether these reports have been published keeping the fundamentals of Shiv Sena supremo- Bal Thackeray- as the newspaper does not have a history of giving space for settling personal scores. It used to make political commentary on relevant socio-political issues, but settling personal scores by Editor in Chief- which is currently held by Sanjay Raut- was never the aim of newspaper.
In the last few weeks, the newspaper has criticized the political decisions of Shiv Sena.
After Raut’s brother -Sunil Raut, MLA from Vikroli constituency- was not awarded with cabinet berth in the alliance government, the newspaper opined that original Shiv Sainik’s are being ignored at the cost of newcomers and alliance partners. It is important to note here that Sanjay Raut is the Editor in Chief of Saamana, and therefore, the article must have been curated by him. Raut did not attend the swearing-in ceremony of the 36 ministers.
In an editorial, Saamana also admitted that there is tussle among the allies over cabinet berths. “The Cabinet expansion was, indeed, delayed but it finally happened. There were some sparks of disappointment from those who could not make the cut, but the list of probables was huge,” read Shiv Sena mouthpiece. As the newspaper is considered party mouthpiece, the criticism of the party under the leadership of Sanjay Raut could be seen as Raut’s personal dissatisfaction with the functioning of the alliance government.
However, when the media started reporting over Sanjay Raut’s fall from grace, and his inability to persuade the alliance to offer ministerial berth to his brother, he said that he and his brother work for the organization and welfare of the people, and they are not interested in ministries.
Raut fashioned himself as master political strategist after he crafted the alliance deal, and saw himself as number two in the government. He went as far as to suggest that he is crafting a strategy to instrument the fall of BJP’s government in Maharashtra. However, as the alliance formed government in power, he could not win even a ministerial position for his brother.
He has been sidelined by the alliance, probably at the behest of Pawar family; because the Pawar’s would not like to have a person as the advisor in the government who changes camp at the drop of hat.
Sanjay Raut’s dream to secure the number two position in the government has been shattered, and he is showing the frustration through his editorials in Saamana. He is using the newspaper to settle the personal score; the newspaper which used to be the mouthpiece of Shiv Sena has become the mouthpiece of Sanjay Raut.