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Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena gets court's permission for Dussehra rally at Mumbai's Shivaji Park, BIG LOSS for Eknath Shinde camp

Uddhav Thackeray Vs Eknath Shinde: Mumbai’s civic body – BMC – had earlier denied permission for the Dussehra rally at Shivaji Park to both factions of Shiv Sena citing law and order concerns. The dispute over the iconic venue then moved to the Bombay High Court which passed its order after hearing the petitions filed by the rival factions today. The order was passed by a division bench of Justices R D Dhanuka and Kamal Khata.

Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena gets court's permission for Dussehra rally at Mumbai's Shivaji Park, BIG LOSS for Eknath Shinde camp

Mumbai: In a big victory for the Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena faction, the Bombay High court on Friday granted it permission to hold its annual Dussehra rally at Mumbai's iconic Shivaji Park. Welcoming the Bombay High Court's decision, the Uddhav faction said "its faith in the judiciary stood vindicated." Welcoming the decision, party spokesperson Manisha Kayande said this year's rally will be grand. 

"Our faith in the judiciary stands vindicated. For the last many years, the Dussehra rally has been taking place at `Shiv-tirtha' (as the Sena refers to Shivaji Park), but this time attempt was made through the Shinde faction and BJP to create obstacles. Thankfully, the court rejected it," said Sena secretary Vinayak Raut.

Mumbai’s civic body – BMC – had earlier denied permission for the Dussehra rally at Shivaji Park to both factions of Shiv Sena citing law and order concerns. The dispute over the iconic venue then moved to the Bombay High Court which passed its order after hearing the petitions filed by the rival factions today. The order was passed by a division bench of Justices R D Dhanuka and Kamal Khata.

 

 

In its order, the Bombay HC court said, "Video recording of the entire function will be done and if it's found that petitioners are responsible for creating any law and order situation, it would affect their permission in future." The High Court then directed the Uddhav-led Shiv Sena to approach the BMC ward officer with this order and seek permission afresh as per the GR of 2016.

The Uddhav Thackeray faction has been maintaining that it would hold the annual event at Shivaji Park despite the denial of permission while accusing the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) of following the BJP's script. The Shiv Sena, founded by Bal Thackeray, has been holding its annual Dussehra rally at the Shivaji Park since 1966 except for the last two years of the coronavirus pandemic, it said.

Deputy municipal commissioner (zone-2) in separate letters sent to the two factions on Wednesday denied permission to use the ground in central Mumbai's Dadar area. The Shinde faction had last week obtained the nod for holding the rally at the MMRDA ground in Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) on the same day, October 5, as an alternative. 

The Thackeray group too has sought permission from the BMC to hold its rally at the MMRDA ground, though Uddhav Thackeray on Wednesday vowed to hold the event at the Shivaji Park. In its letters rejecting the applications, the BMC cited remarks by the Shivaji Park police station that "if any one of the applicants is granted permission to hold the rally, this may create a serious problem of law and order in the sensitive area of "Shivaji Park". 

On August 22, Anil Desai of the Thackeray-led Sena applied to the BMC for permission for Shivaji Park. On August 30, MLA Sada Sarvankar of the Shinde faction also made a similar application. 

Following the BMC's decision, the Bombay High Court on Thursday allowed the Thackeray-led Sena to amend its earlier petition so as to challenge the denial of permission. In the original petition, the Sena had sought a direction for the BMC to decide its application. 

The Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi government, which comprised the Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress, collapsed in June this year after a revolt led by Eknath Shinde against the Sena leadership. Shinde was later sworn in as chief minister with BJP's Devendra Fadnavis as his deputy. Kiran Pawaskar, the spokesperson of the Shinde camp, said it will keep trying to get the Shivaji Park for its event till the last moment. 

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