The Maharashtra Navnirman Sena has exposed its ugly face yet again — this time in the Legislative Assembly. Are we to assume that its legislators attacked Samajwadi Party leader Abu Azmi for taking the oath in Hindi to further the cause of the Maratha Manus? If yes, let them rest assured that no right-thinking Indian will approve of their criminal act. The suspension of four MLAs, that too for four years, is not adequate. All MNS members who were involved in the ugly episode should be booked under criminal charges for defaming India and the national language. Hats off to Mr. Azmi who took the oath in Hindi to keep up the national spirit.
An elected member of the Assembly attacked by fellow MLAs just because he wants to take the oath of office in the national language! On the one hand, we express our concern over terrorism and condemn the attacks on Indians in Australia. On the other, we watch helplessly as incidents of internal terrorism unfold.
I think we use the words “the world’s largest democracy” to describe India without understanding the true meaning. It is indeed regrettable that an MLA cannot take the oath of office in Hindi. The MNS has brought shame and dishonour to the country.
Does the Constitution bar the use of Hindi in the legislative assemblies of the States in which Hindi is not the official language? If not, why shouldn’t the MNS be derecognised?
Attacks by MNS activists on people from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh in the name of Marathi pride are common in Maharashtra but on Monday, they exceeded all limits. Who are they to decide what language a person should speak in?
The attack on Mr. Azmi points to the goonda raj let loose by the MNS. Raj Thackeray and his followers are fostering hatred between the Marathi and non-Marathi speaking people. The ruling parties, by remaining a silent spectator in the Assembly, have created the impression that they encourage such incidents.
When MNS legislator Ramesh Wanjale pulled down the podium and the mike to prevent Mr. Azmi from taking the oath in Hindi, he pulled away one of the pillars supporting the democratic platform on which our country stands. It is the latest of many incidents which shows that politicians are growing more and more fanatical and intolerant.
That the MNS legislators did not object when Congress legislator Baba Siddiqui took the oath in English, but attacked Mr. Azmi for doing so in Hindi is astonishing.
Anand Kumar Singh,
The suspension of four MLAs of the MNS is welcome. Stringent action should be taken against all those involved in the despicable incident. They are not fit to be members of the august Assembly.
The intolerance exhibited by the MNS is deplorable. It is time the Centre intervened in Maharashtra to put an end to the chauvinistic activities of the MNS and the Election Commission derecognised the party.
C. Lakshmi Narain,
Besides adding another dirty chapter to the history of the Maharashtra Assembly, the MNS has insulted the national language. The MLAs who, instead of swearing allegiance to the pluralistic Constitution, attacked a sitting MLA should be banned forever from contesting elections.
A. Hameed Yousuf,
How will speaking in Marathi help the poor farmers of the State and ameliorate their condition? Should not the MNS realise that it is doing no good to the country but is adding one more chapter to extremism?
Ch. Raghav Saket,
Diversity is an important feature of our country. It should not become a cause for disagreement. If incidents such as the attack on Mr. Azmi are not dealt with firmly, society will disintegrate further.
Sarvan Kumar Tiwari,
Our politicians do not realise the dangers of such destabilising acts. It is a pity that we, the people, are helpless and unable to find an efficient leader. Unless we find a solution soon, our own people will be responsible for the destruction of democracy.
It is ironical that even people in power have such a narrow outlook to unity and integrity. At a time when the country needs to stand united, incidents such as the one that took place in the Maharashtra Assembly will only end up dividing people.
The attack on Mr. Azmi — and the display of the MNS variety of hooliganism — was indeed one of the most despicable acts that could have been committed in a democracy.
The conduct of the MNS MLAs in utter disregard for not only the letter but also the spirit of democracy was shameful. Those responsible should be charged with disrespecting the Constitution and banned from running for elections.