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20 arrested for violence in Narayan Rane's hometown, curfew lifted
August 02, 2003 21:35 IST
At least 20 people were arrested on Saturday in connection with the violence by irate Shiv Sainiks in former Maharashtra chief minister Narayan Rane's hometown Kankavli, in Sindhudurg district.
A 24-hour curfew had been clamped in the town on Friday August 1, when the violence began. It was lifted on Saturday afternoon once the situation was brought under control, official sources said.
The Shiv Sainiks had gone on a rampage, storming the local police station and damaging vehicles and property, protesting against the police's failure to nab the 12 people accused of razing Narayan Rane's residence on November 23, 2002.
The violence occurred despite Chief Minister Sushilkumar Shinde giving an assurance in the state assembly on July 24, 2003 that the guilty would be arrested within eight days after the opposition had created a ruckus over the issue.
Deputy Chief Minister Chhagan Bhujbal, who also holds the home portfolio, described the incident as 'unfortunate', especially in view of the chief minister's assurance.
"On one hand, they (Shiv Sena) talk about maintaining law and order and on the other, they go on the rampage, damaging shops and public property," he said adding, "They are setting a wrong precedent by resorting to rioting."
Defending the government's failure to fulfil its promise, Bhujbal said, "The police machinery was busy dealing with a bomb blast in Ghatkopar, the Mumbai bandh called by the Shiv Sena-Bharatiya Janata Party combine and an explosion in suburban Jogeshwari."
The Sena accuses Nationalist Congress Party workers, including legislator Gurunath Kulkarni, of attacking Rane's residence, a petrol pump and hotel on November 23, 2002 following the murder of NCP leader Satyavijay Bhise.
More reports from Maharashtra
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