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Security reinforced in Shegaon ahead of Rahul’s Rally, day after his remarks on Savarkar Kick Up Row

Police increased security at Shegaon in Maharashtra’s Buldhana district on Friday ahead of the public meeting of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, whose comments about Hindutva ideologue VD Savarkar have sparked controversy and protests.

The Bharat Jodo Yatra led by Gandhi reached Shegaon this morning and he will address the gathering in the evening.

Since Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) workers plan to protest against Gandhi over his remarks against Savarkar, security has been strengthened, an official said.

At least 1,700 police officers are being deployed to Shegaon along with the companies of the State Reserve Police Force (SRPF) and the Quick Response Team (QRT), he said.

Police will conduct ‘nakabandi’ (roadblocks) to prevent MNS workers from entering the gathering site, the official said, adding that 700 personnel, some in civilian clothes, will be deployed to the ground.

The MNS had warned on Thursday it would display black flags to Gandhi in Shegaon in protest of his remarks against Savarkar.

Gandhi had held a press conference at Wadegaon in Akola district on Thursday where he claimed that Savarkar helped British rulers and wrote a petition for mercy to them out of fear, leading Mahatma Gandhi, Sardar Patel, Jawaharlal Nehru and other freedom leaders betrayed. conflict.

Two days earlier, Gandhi had addressed a rally in Washim district organized as part of his yatra where he called Savarkar a symbol of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). “He was imprisoned in Andaman for two to three years. He started writing petitions for mercy,” the congressman had said.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Balasahebanchi Shiv Sena, the faction led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, have criticized Gandhi for the remarks. The workers of these parties held protests against him on Thursday. Uddhav Thackeray, whose faction of the Sena cooperates with the Congress, has also denounced Gandhi’s statements against Savarkar.

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