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NCP activists attack VHP office

In a rare incident, an office of the right-wing VHP was allegedly attacked by NCP workers in the northern Maharashtra town of Nasik, reports Zeeshan Shaikh.

india Updated: Oct 26, 2008 01:05 IST
Zeeshan Shaikh

In a rare incident, an office of the right-wing VHP was allegedly attacked by NCP workers in the northern Maharashtra town of Nasik on Saturday.

The attack carried out in full media glare — which was given information in advance — was apparently to protest against the alleged involvement of VHP activists in the Malegaon and Modasa blasts.

Four ABVP activists were arrested recently for planting a bomb in Malegaon, 100 km away from Nasik.

Though the NCP denies any hand in the attack, the VHP accused its activists of ransacking its office. “Nearly 20 to 25 activists shouting slogans ‘Rashtravadi Congress Zindabad’ and ‘Sharad Pawar Zindadad’ ransacked our office and beat up three of our activists,” VHP’s Nashik district president Shyam Gharote told HT.

NCP chief Sharad Pawar had questioned the role of Hindu fundamentalist groups in blasts across the country in his recent speeches.

The attack was allegedly led by the ex-president of the NCP’s Nasik district student wing, Ranjan Thackeray, Angry VHP activists later resorted to stone pelting in the area and two buses were attacked. Local police have arrested five persons, including Thackeray.

Local NCP leaders, however, said they were not sure if the workers belonged to their party.

“We at the NCP do not condone any violence. We are not aware about the identity of the attackers,” NCP’s city president Gajanan Shelar said.