Eknath Shinde hails from the mountainous Jawali taluka in Satara, Maharashtra. After coming to Thane city, he studied till 11th standard., from Mangala High School & Junior College, Thane and then started his early career as an Auto rickshaw driver. He is a resident of Thane's Wagle estate area.
Eknath Shinde is a disciple of the late Anand Dighe, the Sena strongman who built the party in Thane district and enjoys a talismanic appeal over the party faithful even today. He even sports a beard similar to his mentor - Anand Dighe.
Eknath Shinde was a two-term corporator in the Thane Municipal Corporation, and was a member of the powerful standing committee for three years and the leader of the house for four years.
On 5 December 2014 Sri Eknath Shinde tendered his resignation from the post of leader of opposition and took charge as the Cabnet Minister of Public works Department (P.U.)and even the Guardian Minister of Thane district after the Shiv Sena B.J.P. allied as the Sena had been out of power for 15 years and allied with the Bharatiya Janata Party in Maharashtra and entered the ruling coalition.
His son Dr Shrikant Shinde, an orthopaedic surgeon got elected as a Member of Parliament to the Lok Sabha from the Kalyan constituency defeating the NCP's Anand Paranjape, who had defected from the Shiv Sena and Raju Patil of the MNS.