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FB post backlash natural, says MP

New Delhi, June 5 (PTI): Pune BJP MP Anil Shirole today said some “repercussions are natural” to derogatory Facebook pictures of Shivaji and Bal Thackeray, days after city techie Mohsin Shaikh died after being attacked over the posts he was in no way linked to.

“What appeared on Facebook was very painful. Some amount of repercussion was natural,” Anil Shirole told reporters outside Parliament when asked about the attack.

Police said Mohsin was bludgeoned with hockey sticks by attackers suspected to be linked to the Hindu Rashtra Sena on Monday. The 24-year-old IT executive of a Pune textile firm succumbed to his injuries on Tuesday.

Asked about the alleged involvement of the Rashtra Sena, Shirole said: “We will have to find out who all are involved in the matter. The police are probing.” The MP added that Pune was a “peaceful city” and that BJP workers were working to maintain calm.

Shirole’s comments came on a day four more persons with suspected links to the outfit were arrested, taking the total to 17. The accused have been booked for murder, attempt to murder and rioting, the police said.

Mohsin was thrashed when he was returning home to Bankar Colony in Pune’s Hadapsar area, hours after rumours that a Shivaji statue had been damaged, the police said. Two other youths were also beaten up before the attackers set upon Mohsin, sources said.

Rashtra Sena chief Dhananjay Desai has denied his organisation’s involvement in the incidents. He was arrested yesterday but in connection with other cases, though police sources said he would also be quizzed over Mohsin’s murder.

Among the other cases, one is related to the 2013 murder of rationalist Narendra Dabholkar. The others relate to circulation of provocative pamphlets, inflammatory speeches and vandalism.

Security has been intensified in Pune in the wake of the attack. City police commissioner Satish Mathur said the stringent Maharashtra Prevention of Dangerous Activities Act would be invoked against those who incite violence.

Centre seeks report

The Centre today sought a report from the Maharashtra government on Mohsin’s murder. The Union home ministry has asked for details of the circumstances that led to his death, steps taken to arrest the attackers and measures to boost security in Pune, official sources said.