Bihar: CPI, RJD Activists 'Purify' Ambedkar Statue After Union Minister Giriraj Singh Garlands It
In a case of 'reverse untouchability', a statue of Dr Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar in Begusarai district of Bihar was 'purified' with 'Gangajal' by the Communist Party of India(CPI) and Rashtriya Janata Dal(RJD) activists on Saturday, February 15, after Union Minister Giriraj Singh garlanded it during a BJP programme the previous day.
A video clip of the incident was also shared on social media, in which the workers can be seen carrying a bucket and sprinkling water on the statue. They also chanted 'Jai Bheem' and raised slogans praising Phule(19th-century social reformer couple Jyotiba and Savitribai).
Bihar: CPI (Communist Party of India) & RJD (Rashtriya Janata Dal) workers washed the statue of BR Ambedkar (in pic 3), after Union Minister Giriraj Singh garlanded the statue in Begusarai. (14.02.2020) pic.twitter.com/opwCPqpaAN— ANI (@ANI) February 15, 2020
On Friday, the BJP MP from Begusarai had garlanded the statue installed in the Ballia block of the district while addressing a public meet at the venue. The CPI and RJD activists alleged that Singh stood for everything that Ambedkar had fought against and hence, Singh garlanding the statue was synonymous to 'defiling' it.
"His speech spread communal hatred and CPI workers as a gesture washed Babasaheb's statue to rid it from the 'inauspicious' touch of the minister," Awadhes Rai, CPI district working general secretary, was quoted by The Times Of India.
While Singh has not commented on the incident, BJP spokesperson Nikhil Anand condemned the act and said that RJD and CPI should apologise.
"Giriraj Singh has all the right to pay tribute to Babasaheb Ambedkar. But the act of purification of the statue by Communists and the RJD is shameful and deplorable. RJD and CPI should apologise to Singh," Anand was quoted by The Indian Express.