In a strongly worded letter, a group of prominent Mumbaiites has asked Chief Minister Ashok Chavan to crack down on the Shiv Sena-MNS “goondagiri” and “parochialism” as they battle for the Marathi vote.
“We are already plagued by exorbitantly high prices for residential and business spaces, the highest cost in India of doing business, a declining quality of life and fragile civil security,” the letter states. “We now have to suffer... vandalism over ‘Mumbai’ and ‘Bombay’, the language of shop boards and telephone service instructions. Could anything be more ridiculous?”
The letter goes on to laud the Bombay Natural History Society for standing its ground when it was recently attacked. “The MNS now zeroes in on alleged foreign dancers in a Bollywood chorus line...” the letter states, asking: “How long before we drive the film industry away to Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Chennai?”
MNS spokesperson Shirish Parkar responded by likening the “threat” from the daily influx of migrants to terrorism.
“Mumbai does not only have a threat from terrorists, but the city’s infrastructure is also under threat from the continuous influx of migrants,” he said. “Mumbai has a threat from pseudo-intellectuals who do not want to stop the migrants.”