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A BJP-organised Daawat-e-Roza iftar at Haj House in South Mumbai Wednesday did not see any member of its key ally the Shiv Sena.
The iftar included Shahnawaz Hussain, Mumbai BJP president Ashish Shelar, and city leaders Raj Purohit, Ganesh Pandey and Mohit Kamboj. When asked, Shelar told The Indian Express, “This is a BJP iftar party organised every year. Shiv Sena is a separate party. Why will it attend the function?” He said Sena members never attend such events. Hyder Azam, the organiser, too said Shiv Sena was not invited.
After the iftar, Hussain told the media, “I was hurt to hear about this episode. Since it is the holy month of Ramzan, one should make sure that our actions do not hurt anyone. Even if the MP had problems with the food, he should have complained to the railway minister or to the IRCTC.” He, however, added it appeared that the MP was not aware that the supervisor was a Muslim or that he was fasting.
Shelar said, “Vichare has already expressed regret over this incident. The matter is now over and I don’t think politicians or media should politicise this issue.” He added nobody supported the behaviour meted out to the IRCTC staffer.
The evening saw another iftar, hosted by the NCP at Islam Gymkhana. Nawab Malik, who organised the event, demanded an apology from Shiv Sena at the event. “If they do not apologise, criminal action should be taken against them,” he said.