Nagpur: Maharashtra Home Minister RR Patil on Saturday said the government will examine the controversial statement by youth leader Nitesh Rane regarding Gujaratis living in Mumbai, and take action if he was found guilty.
Nitesh, meanwhile, contended today that his tweet did not target every Gujarati living in Mumbai.
Patil, who was here to pay homage to Babasaheb Kedar, a co-operative movement leader who passed away yesterday, said every citizen of the country has the right to live anywhere in the country, irrespective his origins and language.
The state will initiate appropriate action if Nitesh was found guilty, Patil said.
Nitesh, son of state Industries Minister and Congress leader Narayan Rane, recently said on twitter that Mumbai-based Gujaratis who admire the performance of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi were free to go back to their native state.
He today clarified in Mumbai that he did not target every Gujarati. "I only said those who feel Narendra Modi is doing a good job can move there (Gujarat)," he told reporters.
"My remarks were not aimed against all Gujaratis but only about those who feel there is more development in Gujarat."
"I have taken a political stance....I have stated clearly that people living in Mumbai who feel that Gujarat is developing better than us (Maharashtra) or those who feel that Modi is developing Gujarat better than us, why don`t they go there," Nitesh said.
"I didn`t say that all Gujaratis are like that. I didn`t say we will drive (Gujaratis) out (of Mumbai)."
On his tweet about Gujarati-dominated housing societies favouring only vegetarians, Nitesh said, "I said there are many housing societies in Mumbai which don`t allow non-vegetarians (to become members)."
"Veg skies, Veg hospitals, Veg housing societies. Soon Veg Mumbai! Either Gujjus go back to Gujarat or they turn Mumbai into Gujarat...Red alert," Nitesh had tweeted earlier.
Asked if he had made these remarks as a Congress leader, Nitesh said, "I said this as a son of the soil of Maharashtra."
When pointed out that he happens to be the son of a senior Congress minister, the 31-year-old Nitesh said, "What has that got to do with it?"
"There are a lot of Gujaratis staying here who have pride in Mumbai and Maharashtra," he added.