Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut has gone on record to defend his call for burying MP Navneet Rana and MLA Ravi Rana 20 feet deep after the Hanuman Chalisa row in Mumbai. On Sunday, after the Rana couple attempted to chant the Hanuman Chalisa as a protest in front of CM Uddhav Thackeray’s house Matoshree, Sanjay Raut had commented, “Do not dare to mess up with Matoshree. Will bury you 20ft under the ground.”
On Monday, while speaking to Barkha Dutt in an interview, Raut openly clarified that he minced no words while giving a ‘death threat’ to the Ranas. When asked about his 20ft-burying remark and over his comment that if ‘anyone tried to challenge Matoshree, they should keep materials for their last rights ready’, Sanjay Raut responded with a loud grin. Raut responded, “Hahaha…Yeah, this can be a death threat. I am not denying.” When Dutt refuted Sanjay Raut that how could he justify saying this as a (Rajya Sabha) parliamentarian, he said, “This is not about me being a parliamentarian. This is about myself being a Shiv Senaite. I have spent my whole life with Balasaheb Thackeray and hence I know how and what to speak. I am maintaining what I spoke.”
Sanjay Raut elaborated, “I know this is a democracy and you have the right to protest. But when it comes to Matoshree, it is a matter of faith for us. If you try to challenge it, leaders like me would not accept that. When Raut was questioned over his language which is often ridden with abuse and violence, he said he rarely uses such language and only at times when the opponent understands the same.
When asked about the sedition charges attracted against the Rana duo for planning to chant Hanuman Chalisa in front of CM’s house, Sanjay Raut defended the case by saying, “It is the Mumbai Police which has lodged the case. They are independent institutions. The court will decide upon its legitimacy.” He stated that if anyone who wants the break the nation, or the state on the basis of religion, state and create divisions, rendition charges should be slapped on such people.
On Saturday, MP Navneet Rana and her husband MLA Ravi Rana were arrested by Mumbai police after attempting to recite Hanuman Chalisa in front of CM Uddhav Thackeray’s house Matoshree. When Navneet Rana announced her plan to do the same, Shiv Sena workers staged a counter-protest in front of her house. The duo currently faces a 14-day judicial trial at respective jails in Mumbai.