Pol parties condemn Sena’s protest at BCCI HQ, Sena justifies
Mumbai/New Delhi : The storming of BCCI headquarters in Mumbai by protesting Shiv Sena workers over the issue of resumption of cricket ties with Pakistan today sparked condemnation with ally BJP saying there is no place for “hooliganism” while Congress called it “abominable”.
An unfazed Shiv Sena, however, justified the protest that came close on the heels of Ghulam Ali and Sudheendra Kulkarni episodes, claiming they were only reflecting the feelings of the people of this country as they were opposed to any relations with Pakistan till they stop terrorist activities.
“We are a democratic nation and every one has the right to protest on any issue in a democratic manner. But there is a difference between a democratic way and hoologanism. No one accepts such kind of protest,” Naqvi said.
Congress leader Manish Tewari described the incident as “abominable” and said law and order had completely “broken down” in Maharashtra, and Mumbai has been reduced to a “mobocracy”, citing a spate of recent incidents, including the cancellation of ghazal singer Ghulam Ali’s show due to Sena’s protests.
“It is extremely unfortunate… This is extremely abominable. Law and order has completely broken down in Maharashtra. The President of India should take cognisance of this,” he said.
NCP leader Rahul Narvekar said Sena has been involved in such activities since very long.
“This is not how you express your resentment to a particular thought. You adopt constitutional measures which are available with you,” he said.
Questioning Shiv Sena, the NCP leader said, “When you are a part of an alliance, is it justified? You have to uphold the Constitution. What are you doing…If we talk about the recent examples, they were unconstitutional.”
Justifying the protest by party workers, Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut said, “We have not committed any crime by protesting. We are opposing Pakistan and our stand against them is nothing new. This is not a political protest. We are only doing what is the feeling of the people of this country, because feelings of people are important to us.”
“The people of the nation do not want any relations with Pakistan till they stop terrorist activities and hatching conspiracies against India. There will be no cricket, cultural and political relations with them until they stop doing it,” Raut said.
The Rajya Sabha MP asserted that the Sena will not compromise on its stand and asked ally BJP to support it on the issue.
“If anyone tries to build relations with Pakistan through the medium of cricket, we will not let that happen and will not compromise on our stand. The BJP now needs to come forward and support us on this issue,” Raut said.
Echoing Raut’s views, Arvind Sawant of Shiv Sena said, “it is absolutely correct to protest. What is wrong in it. In a democracy, they have a right to demonstrate against these people.”
BJP’s Maharashtra unit spokesperson Madhav Bhandari said everyone is free to protest in a free and democratic country like India.
“Everyone can express his views and every body has a right to protest. They were shouting slogans in a democratic way…It is a democratic way of protest,” Bhandari said.