Fearing reprisals against Maharashtrians residing in northern states due to Maharashtra [ Images ] Navnirman Sena chief Raj Thackeray's [ Images ] recent comments against Biharis, Republican Party of India-Athvale leader Ramdas Athavale on Monday appealed to Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to protect Marathis in his state.
Athavale, whose party RPI-A had fought the Brihan Mumbai [ Images ] Corporation polls, held earlier this year in alliance with Shiv Sena [ Images ], said Dalit workers will take to streets to protect north Indians in Maharashtra and also Hindi news channels which are at the receiving end of Raj's diatribe.
"Maharashtrians who are living in northern states will be in trouble if Raj continues his tirade against north-Indians. I am afraid that there will be retaliation against Marathis
and Raj will be responsible for this. I appeal to Nitish Kumar to protect Maharashtrians living in Bihar," Athavale told reporters.
Demanding reining in the MNS chief, Athavale said the state government must stop him from making such comments.
"I condemn Raj Thackeray's comments about Hindi news channels. He has threatened to close down these channels... RPI activists would come out on streets to protect the channels and also north Indians," he said, adding the Constitution guarantees right to its people to live in any part of the country.