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Cases filed against Raj Thackeray over toll plaza attacks

Raj Thackeray in soup with Maharashtra's Director General of Police Sanjeev Dayal saying that the alleged speech made by the MNS chief that set off a series of violent incidents is under examination.

Pune: MNS chief Raj Thackeray was on Tuesday booked for allegedly inciting violence and engendering public peace, after his party workers vandalised toll booths in the state, police said in Pune.

Maharashtra Navnirman Sena workers went on a two-day rampage, vandalising toll plazas in different parts of the state following their leader's diktat not to pay the road levy and "thrash" those who raise a voice against it.

The case was registered with Rajgad police station in Bhor taluka against Thackeray for damage to the toll collection centre at Khed-Shivapur on Pune-Satara Road last night.

Bandra-Worli Sea Link toll plaza

Police arrest an MNS Party worker who was protesting against toll tax at the Bandra-Worli Sea Link toll booth on Monday. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar

"The MNS chief has been booked for alleged incitement to violence and engendering public peace," police said. A similar offence was registered against Raj with Loni Kalbhor police where another toll booth was vandalised by MNS activists as part of the party's stir against road levy in the state.

Earlier, the MNS's protest against toll collection continued for a 2nd day with more than fifteen suspected party workers attacking the Bandra-Worli Sea Link (BWSL) toll plaza of Mumbai Entry Point Limited (MEPL) on Tuesday afternoon.

The attack took place after the party workers along with former corporator Captain Malik reached the Bandra end of BWSL toll plaza and vandalised toll plaza number six.

According to MNS sources, around 22 male and six female party workers were detained.

Droves of MNS workers have attacked over 20 toll collection centres in Mumbai, Thane, Pune, Nashik, Jalna and Aurangabad since the Sunday night speech of Thackeray in Navi Mumbai where he asked them not to pay the levy and "thrash" those who demand.

"Aadve aale tar tudvun kadha" (if anyone raises a voice, thrash them). Unless you are told why toll is being levied, no one will pay," Thackeray had said.

In no time, MNS workers, known for their strong arm tactics, were on the streets, brandishing wooden poles and iron rods, pulling down barriers, smashing toll plazas and setting them on fire.

(With inputs from a correspondent)

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