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Pandal at Shivaji Park triggers chaos

Even as speculations surrounding Bal Thackeray’s health caused the city to come to a near standstill, a lot of activity was witnessed at Shivaji Park.

On Thursday morning, the ground —that houses the party’s annual Dussehra rally — witnessed a flurry of activity when three trucks entered the ground at 11 am and started erecting a pandal on the ground.

Shivaji Park
Who gave you the orders? At 3 pm, around 7-8 trucks were seen at Shivaji Park from which workers were unloading bamboo poles. Pic/Neha Parekh 

By 3 pm, another seven-eight trucks had reached the ground and started unloading materials needed to erect a pandal.

When the message reached Matoshree, Sena Secretary Vinayak Raut reached the grounds to check on whose orders the pandal was being erected.

“I was not aware of the trucks and the preparations at Shivaji Park. It might have been done by the police. When I met the contractor, I asked him to stop the construction and return.”

A senior Sena leader told MiD DAY that the construction of the pandal would have helped in spreading the wrong message and they wanted to avoid any incident as far as possible.

When MiD DAY reached the ground at 5 pm, it also noticed seven mobile toilets and three water tankers.

Additionally, several civic body sweepers were present at the grounds.

When MiD DAY contacted the BMC to ask why the sweepers were present, an official said that the BMC was not involved in any type of preparation at the grounds.  

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