Rane said the mosques and madrasas built on ‘illegal’ lands in Shivaji Nagar should be demolished, indicating if not done sooner, it will face the same consequence as Mira Road that led to recent communal violence.


The Bharatiya Janata Party leader Nitish Rane recently spearheaded an anti-Muslim rally in association with Sakal Hindu Samaj – a coalition of several right-wing Hindu nationalist outfits -demanding the demolition of “illegal madrasas and mosques.”

The rally took part in Govbandi’s Shivaji Nagar, Mumbai, on February 10, where scores of Hindutva supporters holding anti-Muslim placards and sporting saffron turbans and flags walked the streets chanting “Band karo, band karo, Love-jihad band karo (Stop this Love Jihad), and “Tu Durga ban, tu kali ban, kabhi na burqe wali ban (Become Goddess Durga, become a Goddess Kali, but never become a Burqe-clad woman).” in Hindi as well as in Marathi.

A large contingent of police personnel were also seen walking with the crowd in the video.

‘Love Jihad’ is a conspiracy theory devised by far-right wing leaders that accuses Muslim men of taking advantage of the ‘gullible’ nature of Hindu women and ‘trapping’ them into marriage, ultimately forcing them to convert to Islam.

Rane is famously known for his inflammatory speeches against minority communities and has many FIRs registered against him in the past.

Speaking to media persons at the rally, Rane said that the mosques and madrasas built on ‘illegal’ lands in Shivaji Nagar should be demolished, indicating if not done sooner, Shivaji Nagar will face the same consequence as Mira Road of Thane district that led to communal violence.

“The Hindu here is also not safe. All of our Mankur-Shivajinagar area is becoming a mini-Bangladesh. A large number of ‘illegal’ masjids and madarsas are being created by ‘land jihad’. We demand them to be demolished with immediate effect,” Rane said, adding, “Police won’t do anything to me because our boss is sitting at ‘Sagar’ bungalow. The government is with you.”

It should be mentioned here that the state deputy chief minister Devendra Fednavis resides in the ‘Sagar’ bungalow.

What happened in Mira Road?

On January 21,  ahead of the Ram Mandir inauguration in Ayodhya, clashes occurred between Hindus and Muslims in Mira Road town of Thane district after a group of Hindutva supporters took out a procession with saffron flags in a minority-dominated area chanting provocative ‘Jai Shri Ram’ slogans, following which the other community reacted.

On January 23, the district administration decided to bulldoze alleged illegal encroachments targeting multiple buildings and shanties, mainly belonging to the Muslim community.

Escorted by police and security personnel, around 15 structures were demolished. Videos of the razing of the stalls have gone viral on social media.

On January 25, as many as 19 people, including four minors, were arrested in connection with the communal clash that took place on the night of January 21, a senior police said.

However, no Hindutva supporter was arrested even after a police complaint

lodged by Muslims alleging assault and arson.

Source: Siasat Daily