Mumbai, Feb 5: Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh on Monday said that the state police has arrested 75 supporters of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) and the Samajwadi Party.
“Police have arrested 25 people in Mumbai and around 50 people in neighbouring Thane," said Vilasrao Deshmukh. MNS chief Raj Thackeray's has reportedly made derogatory remarks against 'Chhat Puja' saying it was a “drama." Meanwhile, Mumbai has been placed under a state of high alert after motorcycle-bearing miscreants threw glass bottles at the gates of the residence of film star Amitabh Bachchan here early this morning.
The incident is said to have taken place hours after activists of the Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) and the Samajwadi Party (SP) clashed with each other throughout Sunday even as preparations were underway for the holding of a rally by the United National Progressive Alliance (UNPA).
"Sensitive pockets, where trouble can erupt, are on high alert. The cinema theatres have also been provided security as one of he movie halls, showing a Bhojpuri film was targeted on Sunday," police said.
Later on Sunday night, Samajwadi Party (SP) general secretary Amar Singh lodged a case against Raj Thackeray, accusing him of encouraging attacks on North Indians and of issuing personal threats against him. The police have increased security cover around the Bachchan residence. Prior to the United National Progressive Alliance (UNPA) rally at the Shivaji Park on Sunday, MNS activists clashed with SP supporters, close to the venue resulting in detention of the violent mob.
Supporters of both the parties allegedly assembled outside the Plaza cinema in Dadar and indulged in stone pelting following Rajya Sabha MP and SP leader Jaya Bachchan's retaliation to Raj Thackeray's statement against her husband, Amitabh Bachchan.
The Raj Thackeray-led MNS has been targeting north Indian migrants living in the metropolis and taken objection to celebrations like Chhath pooja and Uttar Pradesh Diwas in Maharashtra. The party is promoting the view that "when in Maharashtra, behave like Maharashtrians.
Politicians have cut across party affiliations to criticise Raj Thackeray on his latest verbal offensive. Railway Minister Laloo Yadav has referred to him as a mere child in Indian politics, while Steel and Chemicals Minister Ram Vilas Paswan has called for his immediate arrest for inciting the public.
The BJP too has condemned Thackeray's outbursts, which appear to be aimed at taking away the agenda of the rival Shiv Sena, which is headed by his uncle, Bal Thackeray.