mumbai is on edge over rightest hindu leader

Excerpted from today’s International Herald Tribune:

The rightest Hindu leader Bal Thackeray is on life support, and reports that the 86 yr old politician is near death brought Mumbai to a virtual standstill on Thursday as businesses closed and residents cleared the streets.

Mr. Thackeray, the supreme leader of Shiv Sena, the extremist Hindu organization has been suffering from breathing problems. Backers of Shiv Sena have staged riots and protests in the past and have shut down the city on several occasions.

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When we arrived at the airport last night in Udaipur we were given a heads up to doublecheck that the hotel car would be able to get through to pick us up. He did. But we passed directly by Mr.T’s home so it is on the way to airport……which concerns us for Sunday when we want to get to Goa for the last leg of our journey. Nothing can stop us now. We have come so far. Will keep you posted…

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Epilogue…..Thackeray has passed. City of Mumbai a virtual ghost townas fears of riots keep people and shopowners at home.

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