Lending muscle to their party’s protest, MNS workers clad in black T-shirts and waving anti-toll placards started gathering outside their leader Raj Thackeray’s residence, Krishnakunj, in Shivaji Park, Dadar (W) since morning.
Policemen try and move a water tanker, which was halted in the middle of the road by MNS activists on Tilak Bridge in Dadar, after news broke that their leader Raj Thackeray had been detained at RCF police station. Pics/Rane Ashish
Media crews waited for Thackeray to leave for the Vashi toll naka, while the workers sloganeered against Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan and PWD Minister Chhagan Bhujbal for an hour.
Raj Thackeray comes back home to Krishnakunj, after being released from detention
Later, police barricaded the lane to Thackeray’s house, to keep media out. About 500 policemen and two companies of the State Reserve Police Force (SRPF) stood guard at the barrier. Deputy Commissioner of Police Dhananjay Kulkarni was also present to control the situation.
Around 1,000 MNS workers and leaders had assembled by 10 am, when Thackeray and his two close associates, MLAs Bala Nandgaonkar and Nitin Sardesai, came out and sat in a Mercedes to head to Vashi. Usually, Thackeray prefers to drive the Merc, but yesterday he sat in the back of the car with Nandgaonkar.
Around 30 vehicles, including police vans and MNS workers’ SUVs, trailed his automobile. More than half an hour later, with news spreading that Thackeray had been detained at Chembur, Dadar market and shops in the area started downing shutters.
Number of MNS supporters gathered at Krishnakunj
Number of Mumbai Police officials deployed in the area