Mumbai, Feb 15: Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray on Thursday apologised for the death of a man in Nashik in violence that followed the leader's arrest on Wednesday.
Raj made the apology in a statement released from his party headquarters in Mumbai. Ambadas Dharrav, a mechanic with Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, was the first and sole victim when MNS activists pelted his company bus with stones and sticks in Nashik, around 300 km from Mumbai. Dharrav's death resulted in considerable embarrassment for the MNS since he happened to be a Maharashtrian, whose cause the party said it has been espousing for the past two weeks as it campaigned against north Indians settled in the state.
MNS activists indulged in violence across Maharashtra after the Mumbai police arrested Thackeray and Samajwadi Party state president Abu Asim Azmi. On the other hand, Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh on Thursday assured all those who suffered loss of property or of life in the past 12 days that they would be compensated for from the Chief Minister's Relief Fund.
Deshmukh promised the people that police complaints would be lodged within a week against all those involved in the violence.
He gave this assurance to a delegation led by city Congress president Gurudas Kamat.
While appreciating the action taken by the government, the delegation urged Deshmukh to set up fast-track courts to try the culprits.
Deskhmukh in a statement said his government was taking every step to instil confidence among north Indians living in the state. He appealed to the citizens "not to get carried away by inflammatory speeches delivered by leaders of various political parties".