Maha: Rana couple arrested for disturbing peace, inflammatory statements

Mumbai, Apr 23 (IANS): In a dramatic climax, the Mumbai Police on Saturday evening arrested independent Amravati MP Navneet Rana and her husband Badnera MLA Ravi Rana, soon after they suo-moto dropped their plans to storm Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray's residence.

Among other things, the Ranas have been charged for disturbing peace and order, and making inflammatory statement, by the Khar Police Station following a complaint by Shiv Sena activists.

In a countermeasure, the Ranas also submitted a complaint with the Khar Police against various Shiv Sena leaders for allegedly threatening them.

The development came soon after they were detained by a team of Khar Police Station and later placed them under arrest with plans to produce them before a Magistrate Court on Sunday.

Earlier, the Ranas claimed that they had called off their plans to go and recite Hanuman Chalisa at the Chief Minister's private residence 'Matoshri', even as hundreds of Shiv Sena and Yuva Sena activists laid a siege at the politician couple's home, demanding an apology for insulting Thackeray.

An elated Yuva Sena leader Varun Sardesai said it was "the victory of the party and the Ranas could not move out of their home" let alone go to the Chief Minister's home.

"They have failed in their plans. We demand a public apology from them for their statements against the Chief Minister. We have shown them our strength. They are cowards who ran away," thundered Sardesai.

At the Ranas' home, there were heated exchanges with the police who wanted them to come to the police station, but the couple insisted the police should produce a warrant, with the entire high-voltage drama shown live on social media.

"We are elected representatives, but under Thackeray's rule, we have been forcibly taken to the police station. There's no law and order here. Sena goons have gathered outside our home since yesterday. If this is what we are facing, what justice can the commoners expect," said Navneet Rana.

Jubilant men and women Shiv Sainiks said that the Shiv Sena has shown its power and "people like (Ranas) these come and go" and the party doesn't bother about them.

The opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders like Sudhir Mungantiwar slammed the Maha Vikas Aghadi government and termed the detention of the Ranas as arising out of vendetta politics though they had withdrawn their agitation plans.

Other leaders have alleged that the law-and-order situation in the state has collapsed and President's Rule should be imposed.



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