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Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut in Belagavi, asked not to speak on border dispute

Sanjay Raut's visit comes a day after Maharashtra Minister of State for Health Rajendra P. Yadravkar was prevented by the police from addressing a meeting of Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti.

IANS|
Last Updated: Jan 18, 2020, 05.45 PM IST
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MUMBAI: Anxiety gripped the Karnataka government and the police as Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut on Saturday crossed the border from Maharashtra to enter Belagavi district which is the subject of a bitter dispute between the two neighbouring states.

Raut is scheduled to address an event in Gogte Rangmandir auditorium this evening and his visit to Belagavi - formerly called Belgaum - has evoked excitement among the local Marathi-speaking population.

Not willing to take any chances, the Karnataka Police have permitted the Sena MP's entry and event on the condition that he will not speak on the lingering border dispute between the two states.

From the local airport to the Marriot hotel, Raut was taken under tight police security and the venue of his function in the evening has also been placed under stringent security measures. A large number of Shiv Sainiks who had come to welcome him were also dispersed by the police.

Raut's visit comes a day after Maharashtra Minister of State for Health Rajendra P. Yadravkar was on Friday prevented by the police from addressing a meeting of Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti (MES).

Yadravkar, who was allowed to lay a wreath at the martyrs' memorial, was later escorted out of the city and dropped of at the state border, even as various Maharashtra parties like Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party and Congress accused the Bharatiya Janata Party government in Karnataka of playing foul.

Before proceeding to Belagavi, Raut hit out at the BJP government in Karnataka for the restrictions on his visit to the border district.

"Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Rohingyas can enter India but no one from Maharashtra can go to Belgaum . This is wrong. There is a dispute but it should not be so much that restrictions have to imposed on each other," he told the media in Mumbai.

The MES had organised its annual event to commemorate the first Samyukta Maharashtra Andolan of January 17, 1956, and pay homage to those who sacrificed their lives in the long struggle and Belagavi remains a bone of contention between the two states.
( With ANI inputs)

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