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Last Updated: Thursday, 9 March 2006, 15:57 GMT
Ex-Shiv Sena leader sets up party
Supporters of Raj Thackeray celebrating his exit from Shiv Sena
Analysts say the family split will hit Shiv Sena votes
A former senior leader of the Hindu nationalist Shiv Sena has launched a new political party in the western Indian city of Mumbai (Bombay).

Raj Thackeray, a nephew of Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray, quit the party last December.

He had had differences with his cousin, Uddhav, the executive president of Shiv Sena and Bal Thackeray's son.

Observers expect the new party, the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena, to weaken support for Shiv Sena in the state.

The party's political agenda will be revealed at its first public rally which will be held in Mumbai, capital of Maharashtra state, on 19 March, Raj Thackeray said.

A large number of supporters attended the party's launch, many of whom were former Shiv Sena workers who quit the party soon after Mr Thackeray.

Analysts expect the new party to go back to the original grass root policies of Shiv Sena, which fought for rights for native Maharashtrans before adopting a Hindu nationalist agenda.


SEE ALSO:
Senior Shiv Sena leader quits
18 Dec 05 |  South Asia
Shiv Sena suffers poll setbacks
22 Nov 05 |  South Asia
Indian Hindu leader rejects claims
18 Oct 02 |  South Asia
Hindu hardliner faces charges
17 Oct 02 |  South Asia


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