A legend is no more. Baba Saheb Keshav Sitaram Bal Thackeray breathed his last at around 3.30 pm at his residence ‘Matoshree’ in Mumbai on 17th November’2012. As a charishmatically towering a personality of Mumbaikars, he had no parallel to his stature. He was called the ‘only lion’ by his followers. Born on 23rd January’1926 at Pune, he was a cartoonist turned politician. Initially he worked as a cartoonist in the office of the Free Press Journal along with R.K. Lakshman. Hitler was his favourite leader, and this he highlighted openly. He founded Shiv Sena. on 19th June’1966. He virtually ruled Mumbai as a king for nearly four and half a decade. He was forthright in his views and was outspoken. He was both a source of solace and a terror for many. I remember one instance when he called on the then Chairman of State Bank of India, R.K. Talwar, at its Central office in Mumbai. The news that he was visiting the Bank premises spread like a wild fire and it was an atmosphere of a total panic in the building. Talwar was with us in a bi-partite meeting. When he got the message, I saw him perspiring with a clear impression of fear on his face. Talwar himself had a great reputation of being a very strong personality as an executive, but he looked terribly shaken leaving the meeting in a huff to receive him.
The roar of the lion is now silenced for ever and the posterities will miss him for centuries to come. The political scenario of India, as it looks, has come to a stand still point in his death like it is sort of a vacuum. The departed soul, let us wish, rests in peace.