Lalu talks to PM, Patil on Mumbai violence

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New Delhi, Feb 5: As violence against North Indians in Mumbai escalated, Railway Minister Lalu Prasad today held telephonic talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Home Minister Shivraj Patil, requesting them to initiate effective measures to check recurrence of such incidents. ''The politics being practised by the Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) is divisive and has to be stoutly resisted,'' Mr Prasad said.

Emphasising that all Indians have the right to earn their livelihood in any part of the country, Mr Prasad, who heads the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), said the current spell of violence against North Indians in the western metropolis was reprehensible and had to be resisted effectively. ''This is a case of localisation in the era of globalisation, and is totally unacceptable,'' he told Dr Singh and Mr Patil during his telephonic conversation.

Mr Prasad also drew their attention to a series of incidents -- throwing of bottles on mega star Amitabh Bachchan's house, attack on Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam's office in Andheri and thrashing of some non-Maharashtrian taxi drivers in Dadar -- in support of his demand for launching effective measures against the mischief-makers.

Today's attack on Mr Nirupam's office was triggered by his decision to stage a ''dharna'' outside the house of MNS chief Raj Thackeray later in the day. The RJD chief said it was sinister politics being practised by the MNS and must be stopped forthwith. Dr Singh and Mr Patil reportedly assured Mr Prasad that all-out efforts would be made to check the violence in Mumbai and bring the situation under control.


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