After forcing the cancellation of Ghulam Ali’s concerts in Mumbai and Pune, the Shiv Sena on Sunday disrupted a show by the Mekaal Hasan Band in Ahmedabad. And it has threatened to disrupt the launch of Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri’s book in Mumbai today.
Ahead of a book launch of the former Pakistan foreign minister, Sudheendra Kulkarni, who heads the Observer Research Foundation (ORF), was on Monday attacked by Shiv Sena party members. “Shiv Sena activists threw ink at me and smeared my face. They abused me,” said Kulkarni.
There’s a pattern here that’s more than 2 decades old.
Oct 1991: Sena cadres led by Shishir Shinde dug up the Wankhede pitch so that Pakistan could not play in the city. The series was later called off.
1995: Salman Rushdie’s The Moor’s Last Sigh was temporarily banned after Sena protested that a character in it resembled its leader, Bal Thackeray.
Jan 1999: Sainiks dug up the Ferozshah Kotla pitch in Delhi ahead of Pakistan’s tour. Subsequently, the offices of the Indian cricket board were vandalised, in which the World Cup won by India in 1983 was damaged.
2006: The Shiv Sena said it would not allow the participation of Pakistan in the Champions Trophy that was to be played in India. The matches, however, went ahead as planned.
Feb 2010: After Shah Rukh Khan spoke in favour of Pakistani cricketers being allowed to play in the IPL, the Sena protested against him, and attacked theatres that were screening the superstar’s film My Name is Khan.
Oct 2010: The Shiv Sena called for a shutdown to protest the inclusion of two Pakistanis in the Bigg Boss 4 show on Colors television channel.
Oct 2010: Mumbai University withdrew Rohinton Mistry’s Such a Long Journey from its syllabus after the Shiv Sena claimed that the book contained derogatory references to the party.
Aug 2012: The Shiv Sena sought a ban on Pakistani singers participating in reality shows. It also asked veteran singer Asha Bhosle not to judge the programme. The programme, however, went ahead as planned.
Feb 2014: 50 Sena workers barged into a press conference being addressed by the Pakistani band Mekaal Hasan Band in Mumbai, demanding that the musicians return immediately to their country. The MHB concert was subsequently cancelled.
July 2014: The Shiv Sena warned the organisers of the Pro Kabaddi league not to allow Pakistani players to participate. Three Pakistani players were kept away from matches in Maharashtra by their teams on account of the threat by Shiv Sainiks. This year too, the party asked organisers not to field Pakistani players in any match held in Mumbai and Pune.
Apr 2015: The Shiv Sena forced the cancellation of an Atif Aslam concert in Pune
— Compiled by Zeeshan Shaikh