Hanuman Chalisa row: Mumbai police file chargesheet against Rana couple

Independent MP Navneet Rana and her MLA husband Ravi Rana

Mumbai police on Wednesday filed a chargesheet against Independent MP Navneet Rana and her MLA husband Ravi Rana in connection with the offence registered against them under IPC section 353, which pertains to assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of duty, linked to the Hanuman Chalisa recitation row. The politician couple is currently out on bail.

The Khar police, probing the case, filed the chargesheet in connection with the second FIR registered against them under Indian Penal Code (IPC) section 353 in the magistrate court in suburban Borivali.

The police had arrested the Ranas on April 23 following their announcement that they would recite Hanuman Chalisa outside Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackerays private residence Matoshree here, which angered workers of the Shiv Sena, Thackerays party, leading to tension. The couple had later dropped the plan, citing a visit by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the city the next day. Apart from the IPC 353, the Ranas were booked under sections 153 (A) (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony) and section 135 of the Mumbai Police Act (violation of prohibitory orders of police). The police had also slapped section 124-A (sedition) on the Independent lawmaker couple.

The couple was granted bail by a special court on May 4.

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