A statue of Dr BR Ambedkar installed in a park in Sarfabad village of Sector 49 was allegedly damaged on late Friday night. Police have registered a case of mischief against unknown persons.
The matter came to light when some local residents went to the park on Saturday morning and found the statue’s right arm damaged. They said the perpetrators had tried to vandalise the statue to create tensions in the area.
As news of incident spread, around 100 village residents, including women and children, assembled near the spot and started protesting with placards and slogans against the state government. They demanded an immediate probe into the incident and fencing around Dr Ambedkar’s statues.
The life-size statue is installed in a park adjacent to the indoor stadium of Sarfabad village. Local residents visit the park in the mornings and evenings and hold the statue in high regard.
The entry to the park is unmanned and one of its boundary walls is scaled down, making it easy to sneak in. The protestors claimed such incidents have taken place in the past too, but the government never took any strong action in the matter.
Senior police and district administration officials reached the spot and tried to pacify the villagers. They promised that the statue would be replaced and the height of the park’s boundary wall raised.
Lal Singh Gautam, Bahujan Samaj Party’s district president, joined the protestors along with party members. He said Dr Ambedkar’s statues have been targeted during the rule of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Samajwadi Party (SP).
“The incident took place at 11pm on Friday. We received call at 9am on Saturday and went to the spot. The anti-social elements had tried to damage it completely. It was an attempt to polarise people and hence we have demanded that Dr Ambedkar’s statues be fenced.”
Bijendra Singh Bhadana, station house officer (SHO), Sector 49 police station, said, “We have registered a case of mischief against unknown persons. A team is investigating the matter to find the people involved. A new statue is being brought from Jaipur and will be installed in a day or two.”