Mumbai: The face-off between Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) and the Congress turned ugly on Friday with MNS leader Sandeep Deshpande and seven other party workers being arrested for vandalising the Mumbai Regional Congress Committee office near Azad Maidan on Friday morning.
At around 10:15 am, MNS supporters barged into the Congress office, smashed the glass in the office’s reception area and vandalised property. The incident occurred soon after the security staff opened the office. The party workers smashed the window panes of Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam’s cabin and the windows of a car that was parked outside the office which belongs to the party’s minority cell.
Vasant Wakhare, Senior PI of Azad Maidan police station, said, “The windows and glass panes of Sanjay Nirupam’s cabin were damaged. We have examined the CCTV footage area of the incident and recorded the statements. Nobody has been injured in the incident.”
Deshpande and the MNS workers have been held for unlawful assembly (Sections 143 and 149), rioting (Section 147), house-trespass after preparation for hurt, assault or wrongful restraint (Section 452) Act endangering life or personal safety of others (Section 336), mischief causing damage (Section 427), abetment (Sections 109 and 117),provocation with an intent to cause riot (Section 153) and criminal conspiracy (Section 120(B)) of the Indian Penal Code and with intent to cause any person to abstain from doing or to do any act(Section 7)(1)(a) of the Criminal Amendment Act.
Deepak Devraj, Mumbai Police spokesperson issued an official statement stating, “We have constantly facilitated protesters adhering to democratic norms and are inclined to do so in the future. However, any individual or group which ventures into any means of protest which has an element of violence and it endangers the safety of life or property of citizens, shall be ready to face the wrath of law and we shall be harsh while inflicting it.”