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Thursday, June 30, 2022

Before arrest of Ranas, Sena workers break police barricades, try to enter their house

The agitation by the workers of the Shiv Sena erupted after MLA Ravi Rana and his wife MP Navneet Rana said the duo would recite the Hanuman Chalisa outside Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray’s house.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
Updated: April 24, 2022 12:24:39 am
Shiv Sena members protest outside MLA Ravi Rana and Navneet Kaur's residence, at Khar, Mumbai, on Saturday. (Express Photo)

The arrest of Independent MP from Amravati, Navneet Rana, and her husband Ravi Rana, Independent MLA from Badnera – on charges of promoting enmity between different groups – came after a large contingent of Shiv Sena workers broke through police barricades and tried to enter their Khar residence on Saturday morning.

Later in the day and before their arrest, Ravi Rana announced that he was calling off his plan to recite the Hanuman Chalisa outside Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray’s residence Matoshree in Mumbai.

The plan to recite the Hanuman Chalisa outside Matoshree had earned the Ranas the wrath of the Shiv Sena as well as a police notice on Friday, asking them not to come to the Bandra (East) residence, as it may create a law and order problem.

Around 2.45 pm on Saturday, Ravi Rana announced that he is calling off their programme outside Matoshree. “As a resident of Maharashtra and Mumbai, I do not want a breakdown of law and order in the city and create hardships for citizens or the police. I have also listened to BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis, who said that this should not create hurdles in the visit of the Prime Minister, who is visiting Mumbai tomorrow… Hence, we have decided to call off our agitation.”

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Sena workers, who had parked themselves outside the Rana’s residence, however, said that they would not disperse until the couple apologised to the people of Maharashtra.

Subsequently, a team of Mumbai Police entered the Ranas’ house and asked them to come to the Khar police station.

The Ranas protested against their detention. Navneet Rana, before being taken away by the police in an unmarked vehicle with blinds mounted on its windows, told mediapersons, “As per the notice that was served to us by the Mumbai Police yesterday, asking us not to hold the agitation, we did not step out from our house today. However, in spite of complying with the notice, the police have forcefully entered our house and are taking us to the police station. What kind of rule of law is being followed in Maharashtra?”

The police said that the couple initially objected to coming down to the police station and sought a warrant. “But we somehow managed to take them to the police station, following which a case was registered and they were arrested,” said a senior officer.
Sena leaders took an aggressive stand against the Ranas, with party MP Sanjay Raut on Saturday challenging Navneet Rana to get elected from Amravati again. “We urge them not to mess with Shiv Sena. Don’t disturb Matoshree. Else, they will be buried 20 feet below. Do not test Shiv Sena’s restraint,” he added.

Raut alleged the former CM Devendra Fandavis was behind the “enemies” of Maharashtra. “These are bogus people who are trying to attack Shiv Sena in the name of Hindutva. There was a conspiracy to do something different by entering Matoshree. They (Navneet and Ravi Rana) are the enemies of Maharashtra. Some prominent people in the BJP are trying to attack the Shiv Sena by keeping a gun on their shoulders. Former chief minister and Opposition leader is standing behind them.”

Transport Minister Anil Parab added, “They have disturbed the atmosphere of Mumbai for the last three days and tried to stir riots…”

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