Three men who were picked up by Pune Police on suspicion of being “illegal Bangladeshis” after raids by Maharashtra Navnirman Sena workers were released after it was confirmed that they were Indian citizens from West Bengal, The Indian Express reported on Monday.
The incident took place on Saturday when MNS workers, led by party leader Rahul Gawli, launched a “drive” against suspected Bangladeshi migrants. Accompanied by police, they entered the homes of three men in Balajinagar area of Dhankawadi and demanded documentary evidence to prove that they were Indians. The men, identified as Dilshad Mansuri, Roshan Shaikh and Bappi Sardar, were rounded up and questioned in front of other residents of the locality.
Even after showing documents to prove their identity, the police reportedly took the men to Sahakarnagar police station and detained them till Saturday evening.
One of the men has submitted a complaint against MNS workers, alleging harassment, trespassing and invasion of privacy. No first information report has been registered so far.
Assistant Commissioner of Police Sarjerao Babar said they will inquire into it and take appropriate action in the matter. “All three men are Indians and hence they were let off,” he added. “It’s true that one of the three has submitted a complaint, alleging that he was harassed by MNS activists.”
MNS leader Sachin Katkar alleged that the party high command had asked them to conduct the raid and continued to claim that the men were Bangladeshis. “Raj Thackeray saheb had given us an ‘aadesh’ to remove Pakistani and Bangladeshi Muslims staying in Maharashtra illegally,” he said. “Accordingly, we gathered early morning in the presence of police at Balajinagar, where many illegal immigrants stay. After the raids, we handed over the illegal Bangladeshis to police. Although they showed documents, they clearly were fake.”