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Maratha bandh: IT firm in Pune files FIR against mob for breaking gate, forcing office closure

The Maharashtra bandh called by Maratha organisations on August 9 saw mobs enter various office premises in Pune forcing employees to vacate the offices under threat of violence. IT firms such as Sunguard, Syntel and Persistent Systems were among those which witnessed such incidents.

pune Updated: Aug 12, 2018 16:48 IST
Nadeem Inamdar
Nadeem Inamdar
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,IT firm,breaking gate
The protestors left only after all the employees were forcibly made to leave work on Thursday afternoon, Prakash Limaye (72), security advisor of the company, said in his complaint to the Deccan Gymkhana police station.(HT PHOTO)

Leading software development firm Persistent Systems Limited has lodged an first information report (FIR) with the Pune city police against “50-60 unidentified anti-social elements” for allegedly breaking their gate and entering their Erandwane office premises forcibly on August 9, the day of the Maharashtra bandh.

The protestors left only after all the employees were forcibly made to leave work on Thursday afternoon, Prakash Limaye (72), security advisor of the company, said in his complaint to the Deccan Gymkhana police station.

The Maharashtra bandh called by Maratha organisations on August 9 saw mobs enter various office premises in Pune forcing employees to vacate the offices under threat of violence. IT firms such as Sunguard, Syntel and Persistent Systems were among those which witnessed such incidents.

The FIR was registered on Friday for offences under Sections 143 (punishment for unlawful assembly), 145 (participation in unlawful assembly), 452 (trespass), 427 (damage to property) and 506 (criminal intimidation) under the Indian Penal Code and relevant sections of the Bombay Police Act.

Police sub-inspector Milind Kamble, who is investigating the case, said, “We have got CCTV footage and are trying to identify the accused persons. They will be arrested once their identity is verified by us.”

Limaye in his complaint said there were about 1,500-1,600 employees working in the office and 19 security guards were deployed at the main gate and exit gate which were closed.

At around 1 pm, some people with saffron flags started gathering in front of the gate and soon about 50-60 protesters demanded closure of the office. “I tried to pacify them, but they pushed me aside and broke the gate,” the complaint said. The protestors were shouting and wanted to know why the office had been kept open when the bandh call had been given in advance. They entered the office and raised slogans, the complaint said.

“We tried to reason with the protestors and asked them to sit in the open space in the company premises. I informed the police control room as well as the Deccan Gymkhana police station and a police team had also reached there. I also informed senior officials and advised closure of office. Around 1.55 pm, when all employees left office, the protestors also went away,” Limaye said.

While some employees panicked and saw the protestors break the gates of the company and enter the office premises shouting slogans, some others shot videos on their phone-cameras and circulated it on social media. Employees frantically calling for police assistance was also captured in the footage.

First Published: Aug 12, 2018 14:50 IST