UMC en­gi­neer as­saulted over pol­luted nul­lah

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - NAVI MUMBAI - Sa­jana Nam­biar sa­jana.nam­biar@hin­dus­tan­times.com

For­mer cor­po­ra­tor of Kalyan-Dom­bivli Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion ( KDMC) Nitin Nikam, who had called off his sec­ond protest on Sun­day, as­saulted an en­gi­neer from Ul­has­na­gar Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion (UMC) on Wed­nes­day.

Soon af­ter the as­sault, UMC em­ploy­ees went on a strike, protest­ing the in­ci­dent.

Nikam, who be­longs to Ma­ha­rash­tra Navnir­man Sena, has been protest­ing over the pol­luted Ul­has river, de­mand­ing the civic of­fi­cials to clean it as it sup­plies wa­ter to res­i­dents.

On March 22, Nikam started his protest against the UMC for its fail­ure to close the Khe­mani nul­lah that flows into the Ul­has river, lead­ing to pol­lu­tion. He called off the protest af­ter MNS chief met him and asked him to with­draw the strike.

On Wed­nes­day, he went to the UMC head­quar­ters with his sup­port­ers, barged into civic com­mis­sioner Manohar Hire’s cabin and de­manded an ex­pla­na­tion for the de­lay in clos­ing the Khe­mani nul­lah.

Hire called the en­gi­neer, Kalai Selvan, into his cabin. He could not give a valid ex­pla­na­tion about the work. This an­gered Nikam, who poured wa­ter over him. He was car­ry­ing a bot­tle of nul­lah wa­ter with him.

The in­ci­dent trig­gered protest and the UMC em­ploy­ees gath­ered at the en­trance and raised slo­gans against Nikam. The work­ers have de­cided to strike work un­til ac­tion is taken against Nikam. Work­ers union leader Cha­ransinha Taak asked its work­ers go stop the work and called up all the UMC of­fi­cials at the en­trance gate and de­manded strin­gent ac­tion against Nikam. Women work­ers went on strike soon af­ter the news about the in­ci­dent spread across the UMC premises.

The work­ers also de­manded that MNS work­ers not be al­lowed to en­ter the civic body head­quar­ters. The UMC of­fi­cials lodged a com­plaint against Nikam at the Ul­has­na­gar Cen­tral police sta­tion. “We have recorded the of­fence against Nikam. He will be ar­rested. We will in­ves­ti­gate the case and take ac­tion,” said Vas­ant Jad­hav, deputy com­mis­sioner of police. The police have reg­is­tered a case un­der IPC sec­tions 353,143, 332, 323 and 506.

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