Nine suspected Shiv Sena workers have been arrested for allegedly vandalising a clinic in Thane district after the niece of the owner posted a comment on Facebook questioning the shutdown in the city for Shiv Sena patriarch Bal Thackeray’s funeral.
Two girls-Shaheen Dhada and Renu-were arrested over their post opposing the Mumbai shutdown but were granted bail after they furnished personal bonds, police said.
“So far, we have arrested nine persons in connection with ransacking the clinic of Abdul Dhada. We are looking for some more people,” Thane Rural SP Ravindra Sengaokar told PTI.
The girls said they have apologised for the posts.
Ms Dhada described Thackeray as a “great guy” whom they “truly respected”.
Ms Dhada, who was arrested after she posted comments on the social networking site opposing the shutdown on Sunday when 86-year-old Thackeray was cremated, said police was polite to her and she had no complaints against any police personnel. “I have apologised for the post,” she said, adding she had no comments to offer on whether she had done anything wrong.
She allegedly said that one should not observe bandh for Thackeray’s funeral. “We should remember Bhagat Singh and Sukhdev,” the post said.
Her friend Renu, who was arrested for ‘liking’ the post, felt that she was “wrongfully” arrested.
According to their advocate Sudhir Gupta, both were arrested under section 505(2)(statements creating or promoting enmity, hatred or ill—will between classes) following a complaint lodged by a local Sena leader.
After the comment was posted, a mob of nearly 40 Shiv Sainiks allegedly barged into Ms Dhada’s uncle’s clinic at Palghar on Sunday and vandalised the place.
Police sources said a FIR has been registered against more than 50 people including some Shiv Sainiks who have been named in the report following the attack.
Also, a probe has been ordered into whether the contents of the Facebook post constituted an offence and even if the offence was registered why were the arrests made, Maharashtra Police’s IG (Law and Order) Deven Bharti said.
Abdul Dhada, whose clinic was ransacked, said, “For our security they have posted the police because what has gone wrong should not happen again…we don’t have any complaint against anybody and treatment we received from the police station is absolutely fine”.