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Shame on Raj Thackeray, responds Citizens for Peace. writing to denounce in no uncertain terms the ill-conceived name-calling by Raj Thackeray against Julio Ribeiro, a man who has more courage in his little finger than Raj Thackeray has in his entire party.

Julio Ribeiro’s outstanding record of public service is very well-known. Whether as the Commissioner of the Mumbai Police, or Director General of the Central Reserve Police Force, or Director General of Police of Gujarat or Director General of Punjab Police (during the most dangerous period of terrorism in Punjab), this tough-talking, no-nonsense, thoroughly honest and principled supercop distinguished himself with a consistent display of great moral and physical courage so rarely seen in public life.

Thanks to him, the insurgency in Punjab which had spun completely out of control before he took over was effectively checked, even though he put his own life on the line (he was the target of two assassination attempts). He displayed unflinching courage in fighting against corruption in the police force and resisting political interference in police transfers (even reportedly offering to resign rather than compromise the integrity of his office). A grateful nation hailed Julio Ribeiro when he was conferred the Padma Bhushan, one of the highest civilian awards, for his selfless services to the nation.

Post retirement, this extraordinary citizen of India whose deep understanding of crime, communalism, riots, terrorism and violence is second to none, continued his commitment to the Indian public by founding the Mohalla Committee Trust after the ’92 riots to combat communalism within neighbourhoods.

Compared to this great Indian, who is Raj Thackeray? A wannabe practitioner of puny politics, locked in a small cell of narrow parochialism, ranting on issues that only reveal his sad ignorance of the history and Constitution of India. Raj Thackeray instigates mobs who attack unarmed and law-abiding citizens of India on imagined slights, who believe not in competing for jobs and privileges on merit but want it all to be served on the platter of “reservations”. Shame on him, whose pathetic attempts to build a semblance of a vote bank is dependent on pulling down India’s achievers and who doesn’t even have the courage to face the electorate.



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