Desecration of Ambedkar idol in Salem sparks stir

An idol of Dr BR Ambedkar was desecrated in a village at Salem district, sparking intense reactions from the members of Dalit parties and villagers, on Friday.
Desecration of Ambedkar idol in Salem sparks stir
The desecrated Ambedkar statue in Salem on Friday


Villagers were shocked to find that the two arms of the Dalit icon’s statue were broken and strewn down, at Vellalapatty bus stop near Karuppur, in Salem, on Friday. 
Soon tension gripped as the members of Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK), Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Ambedkar Makkal Katchi and Athi Tamilar Peravai gathered and demanded action against the act of vandalism. 
They resorted to roadblock on the arterial Salem-Omalur highways, raising slogans seeking protection for statues of Ambedkar. The Mettur Sub-Collector Ravichandran, Omalur Tashildar Chitra and police officials held talks urging them to withdraw the protest.
After the officials agreed to replace the broken statue with a new one, the protestors dispersed. Then, two VCK local functionaries, Nanda Hassan (25) and Alagu (23) attempted suicide by pouring petrol on them and demanded to arrest the miscreants involved in the vandalism under Goondas Act. 
However, police and others acted swiftly and snatched the petrol can and foiled their suicide attempt. Condemning the incident, shops were closed in Vellalapatty and buses stayed off the road, anticipating untoward incidents. 
By Friday evening, a new statue of BR Ambedkar was brought and fixed at the same spot. Following this, the protestors garlanded the statue and paid their respects before leaving from there. Meanwhile, the Karuppur police have registered a case and have secured two persons on suspicion. Further inquiries are on. 

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