Former Maharashtra chief minister and BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis has come out in support of actor Kangana Ranaut in her fight against the Shiva Sena, which escalated from a war of words to the civic body BMC moving in to demolish alleged illegal structures at her office in Mumbai. The Bombay High Court has stopped the demolition work for now.
“This has never happened in the history of Maharashtra,” news agency ANI reported Mr Fadnavis as saying, referring to the action by the BMC – India’s richest municipal corporation which is run by the Shiv Sena – days after Ms Ranaut took a swipe at Shiv Sena leaders with her comment that “Mumbai feels like PoK”, short for Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
Ms Ranaut has also got support from the Chief Minister of her home state Himachal Pradesh, Jairam Thakur, who is from the BJP.
“The Maharashtra government’s move against her (Ms Ranaut) is very unfortunate. I condemn this move. Himachal’s daughter Kangana Ranaut only made her voice heard and raised some issues, but they are taking action for that. This is really unfortunate,” Mr Thakur told reporters today.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation or BMC had raised 14 “violations” at her office in Mumbai’s Pali Hills, which included a toilet apparently built in space marked for a kitchen and an office set up in an area meant for a toilet.
“Illegal alterations” at the Bandra bungalow of the Bollywood star would also be demolished, a BMC official was quoted by Press Trust of India as saying.
The BMC has received criticism over whether it had given enough notice to the actor before going in for demolition since the actor had been away from Mumbai for months. She returned to the city today. Hundreds of Shiv Sena supporters turned up at the airport to protest against her.
“Uddhav Thackeray, you think along with the film mafia, by breaking my house you have taken your revenge,” Ms Ranaut said.
Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had also taken a swipe at Ms Ranaut, saying that people who earned their livelihood in the city were ungrateful.