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Milind joins anti-Thackeray FB drive

Mumbai: The outrage over the arrest of two girls for their Facebook post on Bal Thackeray's funeral grew on Tuesday with Union IT Minister Milind Deora also lending weight saying there should be no "misuse" of laws and a complaint also being filed alleging human rights violations. The police, meanwhile, arrested 9 Shiv Sainiks for vandalising the clinic of the uncle of Shaheen Dada, who was arrested along with Renu on Sunday.

The two girls were arrested for posting comments opposing the Mumbai shutdown for the funeral of Bal Thackeray on Sunday However, they were granted bail on Monday after they furnished personal bonds. Shaheen said she has apologised for the post. "I have apologised for the post," she said, adding that whatever happened was unfair.

Shaheen said she would never use the social media network henceforth. She had no comments to offer on whether she had done anything wrong but described Thackeray as a "great guy" whom they "truly respected".

Deora, the Minister of State for Communication and Information Technology hoped that the Maharashtra government would take remedial measures. The arrests were an "undue harassment" by law enforcement agencies, he said.

"In my opinion what they posted on Facebook does not warrant any FIR or arrest under Information Technology Act or under draconian IPC sections," he said.

Deora, a Congress leader from Mumbai, said Maharashtra government must send out a clear message that any of these laws will not be misused by or it by local agencies. He also condemned the attack on the clinic and hoped those behind it will be brought to justice.

Maharashtra Home Minister R R Patil said the state government has taken the case "very seriously." "So far, we have arrested nine persons in connection with ransacking the clinic of Abdul Dhada. We are looking for some more people," SP Thane rural Ravindra Sengaokar said.

Eminent lawyer Abha Singh filed a complaint before Maharashtra State Commission for Women alleging human rights violation in the arrest of the two girls. She also demanded dismissal of the police officers involved in registering the case. Shiv Sena spokesman Sanjay Raut, however, justified the police action against the two girls.

(Agencies)

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