After the Elphinstone stampede, 23 people lost their lives on the narrow railway bridge on September 29. So MNS party chief Thackeray demanded that railway officials and BMC take action against hawkers, but so far no such firm action has been taken by both.
Mumbai : Hawkers have now retaliated after Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) party workers who took action against them in Thane, Santacruz and Ghatkopar in the last week as their clean-up drive.
The MNS party workers started a violent stir against hawkers in Malad West on Saturday. However, this time MNS workers were taken by surprise as the hawkers turned violent and assaulted Sushant Malavade, the Malad west party divisional head at around in the afternoon.
Sushant Malavade, Vibhag Adhakshya of MNS sustained serious head injuries and he has been admitted to Janvi, a private hospital in Malad (west).
An MNS leader said Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam conducted a meeting with hawkers in Malad (West) on Saturday. “When the meeting was underway, few of our men were asked to stay at Malad police station as preventive measure. After the meeting our men were allowed to go. While they were on the way to Malad , one of the unknown hawkers hit Sushant Malavade with a rod. He has been admitted to a nearby private hospital,” said a MNS leader. An officer from Malad police said the MNS workers were carrying out similar drive in Malad on Saturday when the incident took place. “Malavade was allegedly attacked by hawkers during an evacuation drive at the Malad ,” added the police.
At the time of going to the press, no First Information Report (FIR) was registered by Malad police station. Police officials have stated that FIR has been registered under rioting section.
After the incident, the situation became tense in Malad. The senior police officials including north region police beefed up the security to control the angry mob. The police had arrested five hawkers and around half-dozen MNS workers have been detained by Malad police as a preventive measure.
Just prior to this altercation between hawkers and MNS men, Sanjay Nirupam, the Congress party president motivated hawkers by extending support. Nirupam slammed MNS party chief Raj Thackeray for taking law in his hands for his political mileage. After which the party workers along with Malavade demonstrated a protest against Nirupam while police detained all. Later on, after his release Malavade with his co-party workers visited the spot again and this time the hawkers thrashed him badly.
Recently six MNS workers, including youth wing leader Akhil Chitre, were initially arrested by Vakola police for evicting hawkers near Santa Cruz and later released on bail the same day. Now they have been barred from entering Santa Cruz (East) area for 10 days. The Malad Police also arrested MNS general secretary and former corporator from Dadar, Sandeep Deshpande.