Raj Thackeray, Abu Azmi arrested

MUMBAI: As per TV reports, Mumbai Police have arrested MNS chief Raj Thackeray and SP leader Abu Azmi on charges of promoting enmity between groups.

Thackeray, who was arrested from his central Mumbai residence, was taken in a police van to Vikhroli court in the suburbs.
Commenting on the arrest of the MNS chief, Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister R R Patil said that Raj Thackeray's arrest shows that government will not let anyone take law into his own hands.

According to a Mumbai police official, the law and order situation is under control in the city.

It is not clear whether Raj Thackeray has applied for bail.

Thackeray and SP leader Abu Asim Azmi were booked under sections 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot), 153 A (promoting enmity between groups on the basis of place of birth, residence, etc) and 153 B (imputations, assertions prejudicial to national integration).

The case against Raj was registered at Vikhroli police station and against Azmi at Shivaji Park police station.

A day after an FIR was lodged against MNS chief Raj Thackeray, arson spread to Pune, Nashik and Marathwada region with angry MNS mobs attacking buses and public property in several places.

More than 400 MNS workers were rounded up in Mumbai and Aurangabad triggering panic forcing the Centre to rush paramilitary forces to Maharashtra to prevent the situation getting uglier.

On Tuesday, in Pune and Pimpri Chinwad, MNS workers went on a rampage following reports of the possible arrest of Raj, during which windows and windscreens of 11 buses were smashed.

Shops along Nashik Road were closed down following the incident. Incidents of stone-pelting on state-run buses were reported from Nashik Road, Ambad, Ravivar Peth and Gangapur areas. Bus services were severely curtailed and diverted via Nipani.

In Amrawati, rumours of Raj's arrest led to MNS workers blocked roads and pelted stones at buses damaging several vehicles in the process. Preventive arrests were made here as well.

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