Maharashtra MLA remanded to police custody till Jul 9 in assault case

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Congress MLA Nitesh Narayan Rane and his supporters throw mud on engineer Prakash Shedekar at a bridge near Mumbai-Goa, in Kankavali on Thursday (July 4) Photo: PTI

A court in Maharashtra on Friday remanded Congress MLA Nitesh Rane and 17 of his supporters, arrested for attacking a deputy engineer with mud, in police custody till July 9.

Rane and the other arrested accused were produced before a court at Kankavli in coastal Sindhudurg district this afternoon and were remanded in police custody till July 9.

The assault on the engineer came days after a BJP legislator assaulted an official with a cricket bat in Madhya Pradesh.

Nitesh Rane, the son of BJP Rajya Sabha MP and former chief minister Narayan Rane, and his supporters were arrested on Thursday for the mud attack on deputy engineer Prakash
Shedekar of the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) at Kankavli. Narayan Rane later apologised for his son’s conduct.

Also Read: Ex-CM Narayan Rane’s son detained after supporters throw mud on engineer

Nitesh Rane, the MLA from Kankavli, and his supporters were protesting after finding potholes and mud on the busy Mumbai-Goa highway that passes through the coastal district.

In the video clip that went viral on social media, Nitesh Rane and his supporters, including Kankavli Municipal Council president Samir Nalawade, were seen tying Shedekar to the railing of a bridge and pouring buckets of mud on him.

“Every day the locals have to face such mud from the passing vehicles…you also experience it,” Nitesh Rane and Nalawade were heard saying to Shedekar.

The MLA and his supporters were booked under IPC sections 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 332 (voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty), 342 (wrongful confinement and 120-b (criminal conspiracy), an official said. A section of the Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act was also slapped on them, he said.

Also Read: BJP sends show-cause notice to MLA for assaulting govt official

As the video of the incident went viral and caused an outrage, Narayan Rane apologised for his son’s misconduct. “I apologise for my son’s act of pouring mud on a government official. The protest (against poor condition of the highway) was for the local people,” he had said on Thursday.

The assault came close on the heels of an attack by BJP lawmaker Akash Vijayvargiya, the son of senior party leader Kailash Vijayvargiya, on a civic official in Indore on June 26.

Akash Vijayvargiya, who was later arrested and spent four days in jail before getting bail, attacked the official with a cricket bat over demolition of a dilapidated building.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had strongly disapproved of Akash Vijayvargiya’s misconduct and told party leaders that arrogance and misbehaviour cannot be tolerated.