Maharashtra legislators assault cop outside assembly

Mumbai, March 19 (IANS) The Maharashtra assembly was adjourned five times Tuesday after some legislators from various parties assaulted a policeman for allegedly misbehaving with one of them.

Angry members cutting across party lines demanded the suspension of the policeman, Assistant Police Inspector (Traffic) Sachin Suryawanshi of Worli police station, who was later beaten up by six legislators.
The provocation for the attack was an incident Monday when Suryawanshi allegedly stopped the vehicle of independent legislator Kshitij Thakur and fined him for violating the speed limit on the Rajiv Gandhi Bandra-Worli Sea Link.
Thakur and Suryawanshi had an altercation when the police official allegedly misbehaved with the independent legislator from Nala Sopara (Thane) constituency.
Thakur recounted the incident in the house Tuesday and moved a breach of privilege notice against the police official.
Several members created an uproar in the house over the incident and demanded Suryawanshi’s suspension. At that time, Suryawanshi was seated in the visitors’ gallery and was viewing the proceedings.
Thakur recognised Suryawanshi and rushed outside the assembly with other legislators, including Pradeep Jaiswal (independent), Rajan Salvi (Shiv Sena), Ram Kadam (Maharashtra Navnirman Sena).
They caught Suryawanshi on the first floor of the assembly building and brutally thrashed him there.
There were several adjournments till 5 p.m. as adamant members demanded action against Suryawanshi but Speaker Dilip Walse-Patil did not allow any discussion on the issue.
However, the speaker said that an inquiry would be conducted into the allegations of Thakur as well as into the legislators’ assault on the police official.
Shocked by the incident, Mumbai Police Commissioner Satyapal Singh and other IPS officers rushed to the legislature to meet Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan.
Chavan conducted an emergency meeting which was attended by Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, Home Minister R.R. Patil and others.
Meanwhile, leaders of political parties condemned the attack on Suryawanshi and assured action against their legislators if they were would found involved in the incident.
A battered Suryawanshi was first examined in a medical room in the legislature before being shifted to St. George Hospital where his condition is reported to be stable.