‘He visited Pimpri only once, but left his imprint...’

Balasaheb Thackeray visited Pimpri-Chinchwad only once — to inaugurate two Sena shakhas at Phugewadi and Bhosari in 1986. "Congress was in power at PCMC then and it had tried to stop Sena from setting up its branches. When Balasaheb came to Pimpri-Chinchwad, he warned the Congress to just try and do it...If Congress even tries, we will put them in place in no time," said Sena leader Sarang Kamtekar, who has preserved the paper cuttings of the Sena leader's speech. He added: "Even at 86, he had a mass following. What is incredible is that a huge following among youngsters, which hardly any leader of his age could lay claim to in the country...It is because of this youth power Pimpri-Chinchwad has given Sena two MPs and that too in Pawar family citadel."

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