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Gandhi statue allegedly painted saffron in UP’s Shahjahanpur, sparks row

The district administration dismissed the claim, saying the colour on the statue installed at a government school was not saffron, but creamy yellow, and it had been painted three years ago, not recently.

india Updated: Aug 03, 2018 21:27 IST
Gandhi statue saffron,Gandhi statue UP,Shahjahanpur
A group of people alleged that the statue, which was originally white, was recently painted in a shade of saffron by people who wanted to propagate a particular ideology, and demanded action against them.(ANI/Twitter)

A controversy has erupted in UP’s Shahjahanpur district after Congress and some residents of Dhaka Ghanshyam village alleged that a Gandhi statue had been painted in a shade of saffron, a colour associated with BJP.

However, the district administration dismissed the claim, saying the colour on the statue installed at a government school in the village was not saffron, but creamy yellow, and it had been painted three years ago, not recently.

A group of people of Dhaka Ghanshyam village on Thursday alleged that the statue, which was originally white, was recently painted in a shade of saffron by people who wanted to propagate a particular ideology, and demanded action against them.

A delegation led by district unit president of Congress Kaushal Misra also met the district magistrate Amrit Tripathi, demanding immediate action against the miscreants.

However, in a written explanation to the Puvaya sub-divisional magistrate (SDM) Satyapriya Singh, village head Gayatri Jaiswar denied the allegations and said that the statue was painted three years ago in creamy yellow colour and had not been repainted since then.

“The statue, which is located in front of a primary school, was last painted three years ago by the then-headmaster of the school. It has not been repainted since then. The allegation that it has been painted in saffron colour is false,” she said.

Maintaining that the colour of the statue was creamy yellow, the SDM said he would review the statements of both the sides.

“An inquiry will be carried out into the allegations. We have also sought some inputs from local police and other government officials. A decision will be taken after looking into the claims of all the parties,” he said.

Responding to the administration’s assertion, the Congress leaders said if that was the case then the matter would have come to light earlier and not yesterday.

Misra said ruling party members were behind the incident as they are using it to divert public attention from pressing issues.

Congress party members in Lucknow and Delhi have been apprised of the matter.

The incident comes after the secretariat annexe building, Haj House and a police station in Lucknow and a statue of Dr BR Ambedkar in Badaun were painted in saffron.

The statue of Ambedkar in Badaun was repainted in blue after protests by local BSP leaders.

(With PTI inputs)

First Published: Aug 03, 2018 21:25 IST