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Shiv Sainiks attacked IBN Network offices in Mumbai, Pune

Friday, November 20, 2009 07:51:49 PM, ummidcom Staff Reporter

SENA STEALTH: CCTV cameras at IBN Lokmat's office in Mumbai catch Shiv Sainiks creeping in.


Malegaon: Goons reportedly belonging to Shiv Sena (SS) - the right wing Hindu party in Maharashtra - ransacked the IBN-CNN office in Mumbai today afternoon. Barging in the IBN's Mumbai office and smashing the furniture, glass windows and computers, the goons also tried to attack senior journalist and IBN Marathi's Editor Nikhil Wagale.


According to the CNN-IBN, some 10-15 goons shouting slogans praising Shiv Sena Chief Balasaheb Thackeray entered the IBN Network's Vikhroli office in Mumbai, ransacked the furniture, computers and cameras, and tried to manhandle IBN Marathi's News Editor Nikhil Wagale.


The goons, CNN-IBN says, were shouting slogans Balasaheb Ka Apman Berdasht Nahi Karenge... (Insult to Balasaheb Thackeray would not be tolerated) and barged in the IBN Network's Marathi channel office in Mumbai suburbs. By the time the police came, the goons had smashed the computers, cameras and dashed the glass windows.


The office staff caught five of the attackers and handed them to the police who arrived some half an hour after the incident occurred.


A little after the attack reportedly by the Shiv Sainiks on IBN Mumbai office, goons also attacked IBN Network's Pune office. In Pune, they damaged the OB van belonging to IBN. Police has taken eight people into its custody, says the CNN-IBN.


The attack is the result of, the CNN-IBN says, the channel's reporting against the Shiv Sena's dirty politics that divides the people on communal and regional lines. Sena Chief Bal Thackeray - known for his rhetoric against the Muslims and indulging in divisive politics - has in the past even praised the Shiv Sainiks - as his cadres are called as - for demolishing Babri Masjid and staging the riots in Mumbai thereafter. Occasionally, he has advocated formation of 'Hindu Suicide Squad ' to counter, what he called, the 'Jihadi Terrorists'.


Recently, he received flaks and condemnations from all across the country after he published an article against Indian cricket ace Sachin Tendulkar. Sachin Tendulkar's only fault was, he had said, Mumbai is for all and every Indian has a right to stay everywhere including Mumbai.


The incident that occurred today afternoon at around 04:15 has stunned the media houses and press fraternities throughout the country.


Condemning today's attack on IBN Networks Mumbai office, Pankaj Pachori - MD NDTV India and Vice-President Broadcasters Association - termed the day as the blackest day for the media in India.


"People like Bal Thackeray and Raj Thackeray think that by indulging in such acts they would force the media to toe their lines. It will never happen", he said.


Pankaj Pachori suggested that these political parties should be banned from contesting the elections for they are staging such things to get political mileage.


"The time has come for us to approach the Election Commission to demand for cancellation of such parties' registration", he said.


Qamar Waheed Naqvi - News Editor Aajtak while condemning the attack on IBN office reportedly by the Shiv Sainiks lashed at the state government.


"It seems the state government is hand-in-glove with these outfits. If not, why these people are doing the same thing again and again, and never ever any action is taken against them?", he asked.


The attack on IBN office received the condemnations from India TV MD Vinod Kapdi also.


"It is strange that Shiv Sena chief himself uses a language in his newspaper which no sane person would like to use in private conversations. However, the same man is not ready to tolerate the criticism done in a decent manner against his dirty politics and individual-bashing", he said before adding, "The time has come for the government not only in the state but also in the centre to act against such people."


Meanwhile, the attack reportedly by the Shiv Sainiks is receiving condemnations from the state government and different political groups also.


Immediately after the incident, Chief Minister Maharashtra Ashok Chavan spoke to CNN-IBN, condemned the attack and assured action against those found guilty.


"No one can support such actions. There can be differences and difference of opinions. But this is not the way to prove one's point", Ashok Chavan said while speaking to CNN-IBN.


The incident is also condemned by Congress MP Milind Deora, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Tarique Anwer and BJP leader Prakash Javdekar.


Interestingly, Shiv Sena Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Raut on Friday admitted his party workers had attacked the IBN offices in Mumbai and Pune but turned the incident spontaneous.

Raut said the IBN Network had been critical of Shiv Sena chief Balasaheb Thackeray and that was intolerable to his party. He told the Zee News channel Shiv Sainiks had attacked IBN offices for allegedly misquoting Thackeray's editorial on cricketer Sachin Tendulkar.

"Media is not God. Criticism of Balasaheb Thackeray will not be tolerated," said Raut. "If you target Sena, we will attack. Criticism of Sena is also criticism of Marathi Manoos."








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It is a great shame for Mumbai to have parties like SS and MNS. I have lived since birth surrounded by Marathi manoos as the term goes today but they were the elite and not goons as are pictured today. We lived in such harmony and love. It never crossed our minds that we were from different communities. These parties will only push our country backwards. They will not allow their followers to be literate or else who will do this dadagiri for them, but their children will see the best of schools. They should be made to pay for every damage they cause and punished severely.

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It was the turn of IBN Lokmat, the Marathi offspring of Network 18 to get a taste of the Thackeray wrath. Although Nikhil Wagley, their proficient editor has been at the receiving end of the Thackeray ire earlier also, but then he was not a television journalist. However that is not the point.


The point is: nothing happened to the Thakerays then. And I am sure nothing will happen to them now also. Already some arrests have been made of insignificant workers, whose names no one knows, and who will be let off as soon as matters cool a bit.


Rajdeep Sardesai asking the Maharashtra CM as to whether the actual perpetrators will be punished or not seemed such a futile and useless question in the present circumstances. It seems Sardesai has for quite sometime not been updated on the realities of the world he lives in.


Thakerays, Modis, Advanis, Uma Bhartis, Pravin Togadias, and their likes should all have been declared terrorists long ago. They are blatantly breaking laws and disgracing the Indian constitution and proclaiming their frightful narcissism as being sufficient declaration of their loyalty to the Nation. Their anger for Muslims not singing Vande Mataram spills into violence, but ironically they also attack the local language media and supress any voice that tries to oppose them.


Bal Thakeray's remark criticizing Sachin Tendulkar proves that either he is drugged all the time or he has lost his senses due to old age. And now his men go on rampage attacking a Marathi news channel, and its Marathi journalists. So much for his tall talk on "Marathi asmita".


Nothing succeeds like success, but it is actually the way one puts up with failures in life that show the true character of a person. All these perpetrators of violence and masterminds of human rights violation have shown time and again their weak personalities.


They are cowards who by themselves do not have the courage to die for whatever their cause may be. They have amassed huge wealth and assets on a heap of corpses of the innocent, and by invoking fright and hatred among people. It is time the masses took such enemies of humanity to task and demanded answers from them. Every time a major criminal act takes place, some arrests are made, and even if those arrested have been the executors of the crime, it is very evident that they were only carrying out orders of a high command, that is actually the mastermind. But the mastermind is never caught, never brought to book.


What is the example that these so called leaders are setting before the youth of the country? And for their own generations to come? The authorities by not punishing the real criminals have only been adding fuel to the fire and proving that they are as much a party in promoting lawlessness as the culprits who carry out the crime.


Zohra Javed

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