An auto rickshaw driver was arrested for allegedly making a fake call claiming that three explosives had been planted to eliminate MNS chief Raj Thackeray on Tuesday during his rally, sending the security agencies into a tizzy, police said.
Acting on a tip-off, the accused Rajeshkumar Sharma (34), auto rickshaw driver by profession, was apprehended this morning from suburban Vile Parle and a mobile handset and four SIM cards, including the one used to make the fake call, were recovered, a crime branch official said.
According to police, Sharma had introduced himself as taxi driver Santosh Gaikwad and had called the police control room on August 21, the day when Thackeray held a rally demanding ouster of the state Home Minister R R Patil and the then city police chief Arup Patnaik for the August 11 violence at Azad Maidan, saying that there was a threat to Thackeray.
Sharma further claimed that he had overheard three passengers in his cab talking about keeping three bombs at the site to kill the MNS chief, police said.
On the day of the rally, Thackeray had visited Siddhivinayak Temple in Prabhadevi area seeking blessing before starting the procession from Girgaon to Azad Maidan. Later, he held a rally at Azad Maidan.
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