Shiv Sena got an opportunity to get back at ally-turned-foe BJP on Friday and it made the most of it. Party workers staged protests at various places in Mumbai on Friday against the Hathras gangrape and murder case. Sena, locked in a bitter tussle with BJP over probe into the death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput, said the Mumbai police should be allowed to investigate the case since the Uttar Pradesh police has failed to do its job.
Sena MP Sanjay Raut called the arrest of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi by UP police ‘gangrape of democracy.’ Protests were held at Churchgate, Thane and Mira Bhayender where Shiv Sainiks gathered and shouted slogans against the UP government.
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“In Mumbai, when an actor’s illegal office was partially demolished, everyone pounced on us and put the Maharashtra government in the dock. But here, after this ghastly incident, no one is allowed to even question the Uttar Pradesh Government,” remarked Sena MP Sanjay Raut.
Sena legislator Pratap Sarnaik also demanded that the state police be allowed to register a case of this rape in Mumbai and send its team to Hathras to investigate the matter. “Even the Bihar police had come to Mumbai to investigate Sushant Singh Rajput’s case citing the incompetency of the Mumbai police. Since the Uttar Pradesh Police has failed in investigating the case, it is natural that the Mumbai Police should get involved now. There should be no double standards here,” said Sarnaik.
The BJP, however, accused Sena of politicising the Hathras issue. “The Shiv Sena should have sensitivity while commenting on such an important issue where a 19-year-old is involved. They are just playing politics to score some brownie points, which is unfortunate,” said BJP legislator Ram Kadam.
A 20-year-old Dalit woman was allegedly raped and brutalised by four upper-caste men on September 14 when she had gone to the fields in her village in Hathras to gather cattle fodder. Left partially paralysed and admitted for treatment in the Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College of Aligarh Muslim University, she was shifted to New Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital when her condition did not improve and she died on Tuesday morning.
The UP police then hurriedly conducted the last rites as it refused to hand over the woman’s body to her family, an incident which created an outrage across the country.