‘Was sharing CM’s cartoon national work?’: Sena on attack on ex-navy man

Updated on Sep 14, 2020 04:19 PM IST

The Sena, in an editorial in party mouthpiece Saamana, also slammed the Bharatiya Janata Party and asked if the ruling party at the Centre will stage protests against the incident where ex-servicemen were beaten up in BJP-ruled states and by BJP representatives.

Madan Sharma had allegedly shared a cartoon mocking chief minister Thackeray and subsequently Sena shakha pramukh and five others assaulted him in Kandivali, a northern suburb in Mumbai. (HT Photo)
Madan Sharma had allegedly shared a cartoon mocking chief minister Thackeray and subsequently Sena shakha pramukh and five others assaulted him in Kandivali, a northern suburb in Mumbai. (HT Photo)
Hindustan Times, Mumbai | By

A retired naval officer who was beaten up by Shiv Sainiks for allegedly sharing a satirical cartoon of Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray was on Monday asked by the party if he was not taught during his service period to respect constitutional authorities. The Sena, condemning the treatment meted out to the officer, asked what did ex-naval man Madan Sharma gain by mocking a constitutional authority and was it part of “national work”.

The Sena, in an editorial in party mouthpiece Saamana, also slammed the Bharatiya Janata Party and asked if the ruling party at the Centre will stage protests against the incident where ex-servicemen were beaten up in BJP-ruled states and by BJP representatives.

“Will he [Madan Sharma] be given an award now?” the editorial asked. “They speak against the leaders of the state you live in, you earn, live happily, and if someone breaks your face, then they use ‘injustice, oppression, attack on freedom’ to politicise the issue,” it remarked.

Sharma had allegedly shared a cartoon mocking chief minister Thackeray and subsequently Sena shakha pramukh and five others assaulted him in Kandivali, a northern suburb in Mumbai. The Sena workers were arrested and subsequently released on bail.

“In Mumbai, a retired naval officer named Madan Sharma was attacked by the Shiv Sainiks, no one would support it, it should be condemned but what did the retired officer gain by sharing a satirical cartoon on chief minister Uddhav Thackeray who has been elected by the people of the state,” Shiv Sena said. “Honor the person sitting in the Constitutional post, wasn’t this gentleman taught in the Navy?” Sena asked.

The editorial also took a jibe at defence minister Rajnath Singh after he called the ex-servicemen to enquire about his health. Sena said it was surprising that the defence minister spoke with the ex-Navy person as if sharing a satirical cartoon on a chief minister was a “great national work” he did.

Continuing the attack on the BJP, the editorial raked up the Dadri lynching case victim, Mohammed Akhlaq’s son who has been serving the army, and the Amethi lynching case in which retired Army officer Amanullah was killed. “This incident happened in the BJP-ruled state recently but we never read anything about the Prime Minister or the defence minister speaking to Amanullah’s wife,” it said.

It added many unfortunate incidents have taken place in the BJP-ruled states but the national party never took to the streets.

“Earlier, Jalgaon BJP MP Unmesh Patil forced a Border Security Force soldier, Sonu Mahajan, to vacate his house. Patil supporters also attacked Sonu with a sword. Why did the BJP, which took to the streets for the naval officer today, not protest in favour of an ex-soldier at that time? How many attacks on ex-servicemen have happened in states like Uttar Pradesh and Bihar?” Shiv Sena said.

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