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Sena threatens to disrupt rail board exams in Mumbai, RRB unfazed
November 21, 2003 11:30 IST
Last Updated: November 21, 2003 15:18 IST
Demanding jobs to 'sons-of-the-soil', the Shiv Sena, a key constituent of the National Democratic Alliance, on Friday threatened that it would not allow the Railway Recruitment Board to conduct its exams in Mumbai.
In a hard-hitting statement, Sena supremo Bal Thackeray said the Congress-led Democratic Front government in Maharashtra had resorted to a 'brutal' lathicharge on Shiv Sainiks who fought for the just rights of the local population by ransacking the RRB office recently alleging partiality towards north Indians. "The RRB office was ransacked only to highlight the cause of the local population," he said.
The RRB was unfazed by the Shiv Sena's threat. "We are going ahead with the exams as planned and will not alter the schedule. We have sought police protection for the smooth conduct (of the examination)," RRB chairman in Maharashtra Anil Mittal told PTI in Mumbai.
"Our senior officials have got in touch with the state government to seek assistance for smooth conduct of examination on November 23," he said adding the government's response is positive.
The RRB is to conduct examinations at various centres across Maharashtra to fill nearly 2,200 posts of lineman, gangmen and helpers.
Chiding the DF for its assurance of providing security for the RRB exams, Thackeray said, "We will not allow this exam to be held. If Maharashtrians shed blood for a just cause, then the DF government will have to pay."
The Sena's threat comes at a time when violence has erupted in Assam over a similar issue.
Despite killings and torching of houses of Biharis in Assam, Thackeray said, police had not opened fire at the agitators. But in Maharashtra, Shiv Sainiks were 'brutally lathicharged' when they merely damaged furniture of the RRB office for the cause of local youths.
"We will continue to protect the interests of the local population," the Sena chief said.
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