Raj’s Thane rally hangs in balance

The fate of Raj Thackeray’s public rally at Thane remains uncertain as Thane police are yet to decide on giving permission for the event.

Written by N Ganesh | Mumbai | Published:January 22, 2009 1:48 am

The fate of Raj Thackeray’s public rally at Thane remains uncertain as Thane police are yet to decide on giving permission for the event. The Maharashtra Navnirman Sena rally is scheduled to be held at Thane’s Central Ground on January 24,the day of

Uttar Pradesh Diwas,whose celebration the MNS had publicly opposed last year.

This will be the first rally to be attended by Raj after Mumbai police barred him from making public speeches in September 2008.

MNS leaders and activists in Thane said they had already received notices under Section 149 of the Criminal Procedure Code,which deals with preventing the commission of cognisable offences. Thane MNS district chief Rajan Gawand confirmed that some of his men had received the notices.

Thane police commissioner Anil Dhere said they were yet to decide on the proposed rally. Besides postponing the decision on permission for the rally,the police have issued another notice to the party,apprehending trouble and seeking clarifications on the public event. “We have issued a notice to the party under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code,keeping in mind the background,” said Dhere.

The party has been asked to reply in two days the purpose behind the rally. Without police permission,it would be illegal to hold the rally and police may take action on the MNS leaders for illegal assembly.

MNS spokes-person Shirish Parkar said the party’s lawyers would send a reply by Thursday.

Gawand,however,was optimistic. “We have followed the procedure and have sought permission for holding the rally more than a week ago. Though we not received the approval,it has to be noted that neither has it been denied,” he said.

Gawand said the Thane public rally would be an impromptu launch of the party’s Lok Sabha poll campaign. “Raj Saheb likes Thane.

In the past,he had begun his Maharashtra tour from Thane. The campaign for civic body polls was also kickstarted here.

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