100 Hawkers Beat Up 15 MNS Workers Removing Encroachments In Mumbai

| October 29 , 2017 , 10:41 IST

More than 100 hawkers attacked a group of 15 Maharashtra Navnirman Sena workers who were attempting to check the encroachment along the Malad Railway station in Mumbai, grievously injuring 4.  

According to an MNS functionary, the attack was premeditated.

"The clash took place around 3.15 pm and four MNS workers were injured," a police officer said.

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"While one of them suffered a fracture on the head, three others sustained minor injuries and were admitted at Janvi Hospital in Malad (W). At least four attackers have been detained and we are in the process of registering a case of rioting in the matter," he added.

Undeterred, MNS officials went back with reinforcements to remove the hawkers.

"Later, around 300 of us went back to Malad station and attacked the remaining hawkers and drove them away," an MNS leader said.

A crackdown on encroachments in Mumbai was launched after excessive encroachments by hawkers were believed to have played a role at the stampede at the footover bridge near the Elphinstone road railway station which resulted in the death of 27 people.

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Mumbai Congress president Sanjay Nirupam in the wake of the attack, said that the hawkers attacked in self-defence.

"We have conducted rallies to support hawkers and MNS party workers should stop assaulting them. Hawkers retaliated in self-defence, which is their right. The Chief Minister should look into the issue and give justice to North Indians who are suffering due to MNS. The police should ensure that there is peace in the region," said Nirupam.

Meanwhile, Deepak Deoraj, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Operations) and spokesperson for Mumbai Police, said, "We are in the process of registering the FIR and will book both parties for rioting and assault."