The Mumbai Police on Tuesday registered a case against the organisers of Raj Thackeray’s rally from Girgaum Chaupatty to the Azad Maidan here for organising the protest without permission.
“A case has been registered against the organisers under Section 135 of the Bombay Police Act,” police spokesperson Nisar Tamboli told The Hindu. The case has been registered against Shirish Sawant, general secretary of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena, and other party workers.
Senior police officers said though Mr. Thackeray’s name had not been written in the First Information Report registered at the D.B. Marg police station, he too might be arrested. The case was registered under Section 37(1)(3) read with Section 135 of the Bombay Police Act.
“Technically, it was Mr. Sawant who had asked for permission as the organiser of the rally. So he has been named in the FIR, but Mr. Thackeray too will be treated as an MNS member,” a senior officer said on condition of anonymity. The charges are bailable.
A senior police officer told The Hindu on condition of anonymity that if the court took cognisance, a ‘contempt of court’ case could also be registered against Mr. Thackeray and his party.
“There are two judgments of the Bombay High Court which state that no political gathering is allowed at Girgaum Chaupatty and that there should be no political activity outside the Azad Maidan limits. But Mr. Thackeray’s rally went against both verdicts,” he said.
Meanwhile, Mumbai Police Commissioner Arup Patnaik told reporters here that Mr. Thackeray’s demand for his resignation was on “expected lines.”
The Mumbai Police said they were clueless about the alleged ‘Bangladeshi’ passport, which, Mr. Thackeray claimed, was found at the Azad Maidan soon after the August 11 violence.