Mumbai:The Bombay High Court has come down strongly against Raj Thackeray and his party, the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), on their notice that all shops should have their sign boards in Marathi.
Thackeray had warned all shop owners in Mumbai to have large Marathi signboards by Thursday or face the consequences.
Some traders however approached the Bombay High Court on the issue and on Thursday the court came down heavily on both the MNS and the state government.
The Bombay High Court granted the shopkeepers a four-week reprieve from changing the language on their sign boards to Marathi.
After the court’s order, all shopkeepers across the city celebrated.
"It's a partial victory for us,” says Secretary Retailers Welfare Association Viren Shah.
The court also came down heavily on the state government for not providing shopkeepers with adequate security against the MNS attacks.
“Court has restrained Raj Thackeray from disturbing and hindering shopkeepers from carrying on their business and making provocative statements on the subject. It has also directed the state government to protect the life, liberty and property of shopkeepers,” says petitioner’s lawyer Majid Menon.
But this is not able to stop Raj Thackeray as he continued to stoke the fire.
"How dare somebody take anyone to court for a matter relating to Marathi language and pride in the state of Maharashtra,” says Thackeray.
Meanwhile as major stores and shops scrambled to meet the dead line the Bombay Municipal Corporation (BMC), who issued the deadline chose to keep itself away from the political crossfire.
“We will fine the defaulters only when the deadline will end,” says Standing Committee Chairman BMC Ravinder Waikar.