Maha: 5 held for anti-England protest at Pune cricket stadium

The aim of their protest was to get back the Bhavani sword of warrior-king Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj from the United Kingdom.

Pune: Five people were arrested after they intruded into the Maharashtra Cricket Association stadium in Gahunje in Pune and shouted “England go back” slogans as that country now houses the legendary sword of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, police said on Tuesday.

India and England are slated to play three One Day Internationals at the Gahunje facility on March 23, 26 and 28.

The five claim to be members of a Kolhapur-based outfit and the aim of the protest was to get back from the United Kingdom the Bhavani sword of warrior-king Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, which was presented by Shivaji IV of Kolhapur to the Prince of Wales, an official said.

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“The five accused entered the stadium on Monday afternoon with flags in their hands and shouted England go back slogans. The five have told us they are Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj devotees and want back the legendary sword, which they claim was forcefully taken away by the Prince of Wales in 1875,” a Talegaon Dabhade police station official said.

They have been arrested under relevant sections of the IPC, he added.

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