Sena workers get bail after attack on retired Navy officer
A group of six Shiv Sena party workers, who were arrested in connection with an assault on a retired Navy officer in Maharashtra's Mumbai, were granted bail on Saturday. The group allegedly attacked Madan Sharma (65), who had served as a chief petty officer in the Navy, on Friday after he forwarded a cartoon depicting Shiv Sena chief and Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.
What was the cartoon Sharma forwarded?
According to The Indian Express, the police said that Sharma had received a cartoon showing Thackeray prostrating before pictures of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar and Indian National Congress (INC) chief Sonia Gandhi through a WhatsApp group on Wednesday. Sharma forwarded this cartoon to another WhatsApp group comprising residents of his housing society in Kandivali East.
WhatsApp group member forwarded cartoon to Shiv Sena's Kandivali chief
His daughter, Dr. Sheela Sharma, said one of the recipients informed Kamlesh Kadam, Shiv Sena's Kandivali unit chief. Reportedly, around 10 am Friday, Sharma received a call asking for his name and address. He then received a call from Kadam asking him why he had posted the cartoon. Around 12 pm, an unidentified man called him to his residential society's main entrance via intercom.
Group of 8-10 men allegedly assaulted Sharma
When Sharma reached the main entrance, he saw a group of 8-10 men, who inquired about the cartoon on WhatsApp, the retired Navy officer told the police. He said he told the group that the cartoon was just a forwarded message, but they hit him on his hands and legs. Sharma's daughter said both his eyes had turned red after the attack.
Legislator shares CCTV footage from assault
BJP's Kandivali East MLA, Atul Bhatkhalkar, on Friday shared CCTV footage of the incident on Twitter. The video shows the group—reportedly headed by Kadam—chasing after Sharma as he re-enters the residential society and dragging him out. The society's security is seen standing by.
You can watch the video here
अभिनेत्री कंगना राणावत के कार्यालय की तोड़फोड़ करके अपनी मर्दानगी दिखाने वाले सत्ताधारी शिवसेना ने अब सत्ता के मद में एक बुजुर्ग भूतपूर्व नौसेना अधिकारी मदन शर्मा को मारपीट करते हुए उनकी आंख को जबरदस्त चोट पहुंचाई है। मुख्यमंत्री घरबैठे तानाशाही चला रहे है। pic.twitter.com/qF2NVcIN55— Atul Bhatkhalkar (@BhatkhalkarA) September 11, 2020
Kadam, 5 others were arrested; later granted bail
Sharma lodged an FIR at the Samta Nagar police station against Kadam and others on Friday evening. Dilip Sawant, Additional Commissioner of Police (North region), told TIE that they were booked for voluntarily causing grievous hurt, forming an unlawful assembly, and rioting under the Indian Penal Code (IPC). Six people, including Kadam, were arrested, however, they received bail on Saturday.
Sharma's daughter demands non-bailable attempt to murder charge
Sharma's daughter and leaders of the Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) staged a protest outside the ACP's office on Saturday, demanding the accused be booked under non-bailable offenses. The daughter told ANI, "A senior citizen has been attacked. The police should know under which sections the accused are to be arrested. They must be arrested under attempt to murder charges. It should be non-bailable."