Maharashtra government's action has irked Shiv Sena

Life was thrown out of gear at Palghar in Maharashtra’s Thane district on Wednesday with the Shiv Sena enforcing a shutdown to protest the suspension of two police officers over the Facebook post row.

On Tuesday, the government suspended Thane Superintendent of Police (Rural) Ravindra Sengaonkar and Senior Police Inspector of Palghar police station Srikant Pingale for applying wrong Sections of the IPC and disobeying the orders of superiors in arresting Shaheen Dhada and Renu Srinivasan for putting up a Facebook post questioning the bandh following Bal Thackeray’s death.

While educational institutions, offices and shops remained shut owing to fear of Sena hooligans, the streets wore a deserted look and transport was badly hit.

“We are against the transfer of the magistrate who remanded the girls in custody and the suspension of the police officers who arrested them,” said Sena district head Prabhakar Raul.

There was heavy police deployment all through the shutdown. “Two companies of the State Reserve Police Force have been deployed in Palghar, along with the Thane Rural Police,” a senior police officer told The Hindu.

Even the Palghar Bar Association joined the bandh to protest against the transfer of the local Judicial Magistrate (First Class) Ramchandra Bagade, who granted bail to the two girls.

“The judge worked as per the law in this case and still he has been penalised and sent to Khandesh. He should have at least been given the opportunity to put up his side. His transfer is very unjust. Such things will make it difficult for the judges to function. We oppose such a move,” S.R. Parulekar, president of the Palghar Bar Association, told The Hindu.

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