Mumbai: Lashing out at the government for its handling of the Azad Maidan violence, Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray on Monday said Mumbai police have been demoralised due to commissioner Arup Patnaik.
"When police were being attacked, when women police personnel were being molested, Mumbai`s police commissioner Arup Patnaik was growling at those who were trying to control the radicals indulging in violence. The morale of Mumbai police has been dented because of such a police commissioner," Thackeray said, in an editorial in party mouthpiece `Saamana` here.
"We never said all Muslims are radicals or Pakistan lovers and nor will be say such things. However, a handful of radical and anti-national Muslims have raised a question mark over their entire community," the Sena chief said.
The government and police desisted from taking action against those involved in defacing the Amar Jawan memorial as they felt religious sentiments would be hurt during Eid, he said.
"Is it Muslims only who have feelings? What about Hindus? When Kanchi seer Jayendra Saraswathi and Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur were arrested, did anyone think of feelings of Hindus?" Thackeray questioned.
The country is going to pay the price for stifling the fighting spirit of the police force, he said.
Thackeray lauded the work done by the then Mumbai police commissioner Shrikant Bapat, who, during 1992 riots, took stringent action against the rioters. How can one compare Bapat and Patnaik, who holds a pistol in the hand in which he has worn bangles, he quipped.
The government, chief minister and home minister who are backing such a police commissioner are "enemies of the society and the country", Thackeray said.