Central minister hints at action against Raj Thackeray


Mumbai : Minister of State for Home Sriprakash Jaiswal Saturday hinted at action against Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray for his recent campaign against north Indians in Mumbai and other parts of the state.

Support TwoCircles

Jaiswal declined to specify any time frame as to when action would be initiated against the MNS leader, the nephew of Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray.

“I think the Maharashtra government will take appropriate action at the right time,” he told reporters here.

Jaiswal, who was in Mumbai to attend a Bhojpuri films awards function Saturday night as chief guest, refused further comments, saying law and order is a state subject.

When queried about the state government’s report about clashes between MNS workers and north Indians in recent days, Jaiswal confirmed that the report had been received from Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh.

“We are satisfied with it. We have been told that suitable action is being taken,” he said.

When pointed out that it was more than a week since Raj spoke against North Indians settled in Mumbai and MNS activists attacked taxi drivers and vendors, he observed: “Sometimes some decisions of law and order are taken as part of a strategy. Sometimes action is early, and sometimes late. We feel that the state government will act in time.”

Meanwhile, Mumbai Joint Commissioner of Police (Law & Order) K.L. Prasad briefed Jaiswal on the security situation in Mumbai.

Several representatives of north Indian organisations in Mumbai also called on Jaiswal at Sahyadri, the state government’s official guesthouse at the Malabar Hill, south Mumbai. They are believed to have apprised him of the situation arising out of the MNS’s weeklong anti-northerners campaign.

Tight security was evident in and around the Goregaon Sports Complex in northwest Mumbai where Jaiswal arrived in the evening for the annual function of the Bhojpuri film industry.

The venue is barely two kilometres away from the Inorbit Mall and other places where alleged MNS activists had vandalised property last week.