Shiv Sena on Thursday sought an explanation from its Lok Sabha MP Ravindra Gaikwad, who allegedly hit an AirIndia staffer at IGI airport in Delhi with a slipper, and remained defiant over the incident. “The party has sought an explanation from Gaikwad over the incident. The Sena does not condone violence of any kind,” Harshal Pradhan, media adviser to Sena president Uddhav Thackeray, told PTI.
“We have also sought a version of the incident from the AirIndia (AI) staffer. The Sena has a workers’ union in Air India,” he said. Earlier, Sena spokesperson Manisha Kayande said, “Shiv Sena does not subscribe to such reaction by any of our party members. Gaikwad is known as Ravi Sir and is very popular in his constituency. He has worked a lot towards solving the water problems of his region.”
“We really should know what made him lose his temper. He is not a person who would suddenly jump into such a thing,” she added.
Shaina NC of BJP said that the incident should be condemned in totality in one voice. “This is not about Shiv Sena, Congress, BJP or any party, it is about a conduct of an elected representative especially when you are in a position of power.
“Assuming there is somebody who is not polite to you, the least one expects from elected representative is to show restraint in a situation where you have not just public watching but the entire aircraft wondering if this is going to be the conduct of a politician,” she said.
She wondered how will ever people have respect for the political class which chooses only VIP oneupmanship and one cannot justify this. “When we talk about probity in public life, or certain kind of restrain, it stems from your leadership, and if you are MP, MLA, corporator, even a Panchayat Samiti member, you should show some kind of restrain to your position and your electorate,” she said.
NCP leader Majeed Memom termed the incident as “sad and distressing” where one finds people holding important positions and those are supposed to be leaders involved in such incidents. “If such people’s misdemeanour is to the extent of turning violent for smallest provocation and reacting with physical assault, it is a matter of great disgrace. Their bosses should take serious action against erring legislators and law must take its own course.
“What was the provocation for raising hand on a government employee? These things are happening often in our country and needs to be seriously examined and we must have some kind of provision, ethically, legally or politically, whereby, if such incidents occur, political bosses will swing into action and punish the person appropriately,” he said.
Another NCP leader Rahul Narvekar termed the incident as that of “extreme highhandedness and unfortunate”. “The MP has forgotten that he is here to serve the people and not to rule them. Strict action should be initiated against such erring public representatives. We demand that necessary penal action should be taken.
“He has not only done disservice to the people, but he has brought complete disrepute to the office of an MP, if this continues, people will lose faith in public representatives,” he said.