Mumbai: After a day-long drama, Shiv Sena withdrew protest against former Pakistan foreign minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri's book launch in Mumbai, said sources on Monday. The unaplogetic Shiv Sena came under fire from all quarters and even its ally Bharatiya Janata Party condemned the attack on Sudheendra Kulkrani for organising the event.
On Monday morning, Chairman of Observer and Research Foundation Kulkarni was attacked by Shiv Sena activists who threw black paint at him and smeared his face with paint outside his residence. "Sainiks attacked me outside my home. Around 8 to 10 Shiv Sena activists came home and right as I was leaving black paint was smeared all over my face. I was abused by them," said Kulkarni.
Sena, however, justified the attack saying that this was just a soft attack and it will continue such attacks as long as Pakistan is honoured in India. "This is not ink but the blood of our soldier. The ink attack is just a soft reaction on Kulkarni," said Sena spokesperson Sanjay Raut.
Undeterred by the attack, Kulkarni said that Kasuri's book launch will not be called off. "We were threatened that they will disrupt our programme the Shiv Sena style. They had threatened the organizers of Ghulam Ali concert and they succeeded in it and now this has come. We will go ahead with the programme," said Kulkarni.
The incident took even as Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis assured the organisers of full security cover.
Kasuri is scheduled to attend the launch of his book 'Neither a Hawk nor a Dove: An Insider's Account of Pakistan's Foreign Policy' at 5.30 PM in Worli area here.