CM warns of stern action, 233 arrested

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Mumbai, Feb 6 (UNI) The situation in the violence hit parts of the Metropolis, due to anti -North Indian protests by Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), was returning to normal today as Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh held out a stern warning against those disrupting peace and harmony.

''No matter what the stature of the person is, he will not be allowed to take law into his hands,'' Mr Deshmukh warned those induling in violence.

Barring a stray incident of two autorickshaws being burnt down by unknown miscreants last night, no untoward incident was reported though protests continued.

Mr Deshmukh assured the migrants in the city and elsewhere in the State that they would be given full protection and those harassing them would be dealt with sternly.

The Chief Minister, who reviewed the law and order situation with the top brass of the state police, said as many as 233 people have been arrested in the state since February 3 when the violence broke out. They included 143 supporters of MNS and 90 activists of Samajwadi Party.

MNS activists took out procession in Pathardi Phata in Nashik and made a futile attempt to burn an effigy of Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh even as police rushed to the spot and brought the situation under control.

Meanwhile, Uttar Bhartiya Vikas Parisad (UBVP) President Munna Tripathi began an indefinite hunger strike at Azad Maidan along with ten other north Indians, demanding the arrest of MNS President Raj Thackeray for allegedly attacking North Indians.

Mr Tripathi began his hunger strike along with ten other North Indians.

In a related development, more than 200 MNS members made a homecoming to Shiv Sena at Matoshree (Bal Thackeray's residence). The leaders included MNS Shaka Pramukh of Dindoshi and Goregaon Avinash Gite and Women's wing leader Pranali Parab.

Shiv Sena executive president Uddhav Thackeray, while welcoming them back to the Sena fold, said ''Forget whatever happened in past and we too will do the same. We are like a family, so, from now onwards start working for your party''.

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