Almost a fortnight after he quit all party posts, estranged leader Raj Thackeray had his first brush with Matoshri on Saturday.
Smita, daughter-in-law of Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray, visited Raj's Krishna Kunj residence at Dadar on the second death anniversary of Raj's father Shrikant Thackeray.
Although it was rumoured during the day that Thackeray senior and Uddhav would also visit Raj's residence, they had not done so till the reports last came in. Political observers are concluding that the divide in the family is deepening. It is well known that Bal Thackeray was very attached to his brother Shrikant, a noted composer during his time.
Smita came around 1:45pm and left at 3:10pm. Raj's wife Sharmila came down from her third floor residence to see her off. Raj, who was supposed to attend many functions to mark the death anniversary of his father, stayed at home. But his supporters organised functions to pay tributes to late Shrikant Thackeray.
They distributed fruits and blankets among the poor at the Tata Memorial Hospital. Smita was the first to meet Raj on Friday night at MIG Colony for a family function. After staying away from the function, Thackeray senior on Saturday told party 'well wishers' not to worry about the future of the Shiv Sena and the Thackerays.