Gandhi's Mumbai visit typical of north Indians: Thackeray

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Mumbai, Feb 5 (ANI): Shiv Sena Executive President Uddhav Thackeray has lashed out at Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi for travelling by a local train in Mumbai during his visit, describing it as a mere drama.

Thackeray said, "Rahul Gandhi's train journey was a drama. Rahul's drama was typical of north Indians."

"We achieved our purpose by showing black flags," he said.

"What Mumbai has got is still unanswered. Sena will not tolerate efforts to divide Mumbai," added Thackeray.

Rahul Gandhi completed an eventful four-hour-long visit to Mumbai on Friday afternoon, ignoring warnings of caution from the right-wing Shiv Sena and the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) activists.

Gandhi left by helicopter for Puducherry, but not before indirectly cocking a snook at both the Shiv Sena and the MNS.

During his four-hour-long stay, Gandhi swept aside security norms set for him to stop at an ATM in Santa Cruz for cash, boarded a local train from Andheri to Dadar, interacted with people in the streets and in the train and signed autographs. Besides this, he also interacted with and addressed Youth Congress activists in colleges in the city"s Vile Parle and Ghatkopar areas.

Vile Parle, Dadar and Ghatkopar are Shiv Sena bastions politically, and Gandhi, it seems, appeared to be sending a pointed message to the right-wing outfit that he meant what he said that Mumbai is for all Indians, and not just for the "Marathi Manoos", Maharastrians and Mumbaikars.

Friday"s visit saw the imposition of unprecedented security across Mumbai by the city"s police. Movement was restricted in all areas that Gandhi visited. Traffic also came to a grinding halt.

No stone was left unturned to prevent the Shiv Sena activists from causing disturbances. Over 40 of them were arrested on charges of violating Section 144 of the IPC.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan can claim credit for ensuring an incident-free visit for Rahul Gandhi. His words that he would not let anyone lay an hand on Rahul Gandhi carried weight at the end of the day. (ANI)

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