The move comes on the backdrop of fears that the BJP could lure Sena MLAs into its fold.
Mumbai: Amidst the tug of war between the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena over government formation, the latter Friday wrote to the Mumbai police seeking week-long protection for its members of Legislative Assembly (MLAs).
The letter was given to the Mumbai police commissioner’s office Friday evening, soon after the MLAs were moved out of Rangsharda in Bandra to a hotel at Madh Island in Malad.
The move comes on the backdrop of fears that the BJP could lure Sena MLAs into its fold, said officials.
A Mumbai police officer said, “A letter seeking protection for the MLAs till November 15 was given by party secretary Milind Narvekar. Steps will be taken within the ambit of law and protection will be extended.”
The letter gave the location of the MLAs at Malad, stating that the party chief and other senior leaders would hold meetings there to discuss further strategy. The letter hence sought necessary security measures to be taken in this backdrop, the officer said.
Accordingly, the venue will be secured by the Mumbai police and restricted for leaders from other parties.
The officials said that steps will be taken similar to those taken in July, when a breakaway group of MLAs from Karnataka was put up at a Powai hotel.
At the time, the MLAs from the neighbouring state had shot a letter to the police seeking protection, and stating that the Congress leadership should not be allowed inside the hotel.
The MLAs had also stated that they felt threatened following which the Powai police deployed personnel at the venue.
Meanwhile, BJP leader Vinod Tawde expressed surprise over the Sena’s request for police protection.
“They say they are followers of Bal Thackeray and it’s surprising that the Sena needs police protection in Mumbai," the former minister said.