Attacks on statues: Narendra Modi, Amit Shah warn of action

Mar 08, 2018, 08:16 IST | Agencies

The attacks on statues snowballed into a major political storm on Wednesday when busts of Dalit icon B R Ambedkar in Meerut and Jana Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mookerjee in Kolkata

DMK members, along with the members of various Tamil outfits, burn an effigy of BJP leader H Raja in Chennai
DMK members, along with the members of various Tamil outfits, burn an effigy of BJP leader H Raja in Chennai

The attacks on statues snowballed into a major political storm on Wednesday when busts of Dalit icon B R Ambedkar in Meerut and Jana Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mookerjee in Kolkata were damaged, forcing Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP President Amit Shah to speak tough against vandalism and warning the guilty of action.

Members of RSYF scuffle with cops during a protest in Chennai on Wednesday. Pics/AFP/PTI
Members of RSYF scuffle with cops during a protest in Chennai on Wednesday. Pics/AFP/PTI

Following the strong condemnation by BJP bigwigs and a massive political backlash in Tamil Nadu, state party leader H Raja expressed heartfelt regrets over his Facebook post suggesting removal of the statue of Dravidian icon Periyar E V Ramasamy. The BJP expelled a local functionary in Vellore district for damaging Periyar's statue. Amid fears of flare-up in political violence, the Home Ministry asked states to take strong action against culprits.

No action against Raja, says Shah
BJP President Amit Shah said the party would not take action against national secretary H Raja who is facing flak for his controversial remarks on Dravidian icon Periyar. A row erupted in Tamil Nadu on Monday over Raja's remarks indicating that statues of Periyar could be pulled down next after a Lenin statue was razed in Tripura. Asked if the BJP will take action against Raja, Shah told reporters outside Parliament, "No, we will not".

Fresh incidents
* Periyar's statue was damaged in Vellore district on Tuesday night
* In Kolkata, members of ultra-Left student outfit 'Radical' vandalised and defaced a statue of Syama Prasad Mukherjee
* Bhimrao Ambedkar's statue was vandalised in Meerut

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