MNS workers protest outside Sanjay Nirupam's residence as tussle over illegal hawkers issue intensifies

The political tussle between the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) and the Congress over the hawkers' issue intensified on Monday with the workers of the Raj Thackeray-led party holding a protest outside the suburban residence of Mumbai unit Congress president Sanjay Nirupam.

PTI October 31, 2017 07:44:17 IST
MNS workers protest outside Sanjay Nirupam's residence as tussle over illegal hawkers issue intensifies

Mumbai: The political tussle between the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) and the Congress over the hawkers' issue intensified on Monday with the workers of the Raj Thackeray-led party holding a protest outside the suburban residence of Mumbai unit Congress president Sanjay Nirupam.

Police arrested 11 MNS activists for participating in the protest held outside the Versova residence of Nirupam, who has sided with hawkers in the wake of the MNS' 'drive' to evict them from railway station premises.

MNS and Nirupam have been exchanging sharp barbs since the last few days.

On Saturday, some MNS activists were assaulted by hawkers outside suburban Malad railway station while they were trying to evict them forcibly, within hours of Nirupam addressing a rally of street vendors in Malad.

MNS workers protest outside Sanjay Nirupams residence as tussle over illegal hawkers issue intensifies

Raj Thackeray at the 5 October morcha at Churchgate station. Sachin Gokhale/Firstpost

Nirupam had said that hawkers will not tolerate "high-handedness" of MNS activists and are capable of retaliation.

Following the attack on MNS workers, Nirupam was booked yesterday for addressing the rally without securing prior permission of the police.

A police officer said the 11 MNS workers arrested this afternoon were later released on bail.

Police had arrested seven hawkers under various sections of the IPC, including 307 (attempt to murder) in connection with the Saturday's incident in which 40 MNS workers were also booked on charge of rioting and 18 of them were arrested.

After MNS chief Raj Thackeray addressed a rally in south Mumbai earlier this month over the death of 23 people in a stampede on the staircase of the foot overbridge (FOB) at suburban Elphinstone Road railway station last month, MNS workers took upon themselves the task of removing hawkers from station premises.

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