A day after arresting a man for allegedly desecrating a statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj in Ghatkopar, the police on Tuesday arrested two more men in connection with the vandalism that followed the alleged desecration. The police said the duo, according to inquiries so far, were not connected to any political party.
Late on Sunday night, Ghatkopar resident Jafar Sheikh was allegedly seen spitting in front of a temporary bust of Maratha warrior king Shivaji erected in the area on the occasion of Shiv Jayanti and later near a Rangoli drawn in the area. The incident led to tension in the area and Jafar was subsequently arrested on Monday. He was charged with hurting religious sentiments of a community under the Indian Penal Code.
“Before we reached the spot, a marble plaque bearing the name of a religious leader of a minority community had been damaged. We had registered a separate case in connection with the incident and had been making inquiries in the area to identify the miscreants,” said an officer with the Ghatkopar police.
After picking up and questioning several suspects on Monday, the police on Tuesday arrested two accused, identified as Kedar Kondba and Swapnil More.
“We have charged both the accused with hurting religious sentiments under Section 295 A of the Indian Penal Code. Further inquiries are underway,” said Senior Police Inspector Vasant Patil, Ghatkopar police station.
Both Patil and deputy commissioner of police (Zone VII) Vinay Rathod said inquiries so far had not established any connection of the accused to any political outfit.
Meanwhile, no further incidents were reported in Ghatkopar, in spite an attempt at rumour mongering late on Monday night by unknown miscreants, who circulated WhatsApp messages of a supposed flare-up in Ghatkopar. The reports were denied by the police.
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