New Delhi: A Congress member in the Lok Sabha
today took a dig at Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati,
saying while she was busy erecting her own statues, symbols of
dalit icons B R Ambedkar and Sant Ravi Dass were being
destroyed in the state.
Panna Lal Punia (Congress), who had served as Principal
Secretary to Mayawati in her previous term, said that hands of
statues of Ambedkar and Ravi Dass in Baltarganj area of Basti
district were chopped off by some anti-social elements on
He said during the Zero Hour that the incident had angered
locals and they planned to stage a road-blockade agitation but
were assured by the state administration that the guilty would
"Sadly, no case has been registered yet nor has anybody
been arrested," said Punia.
He said it was alleged that police was not taking any
action because of pressure from some quarters.
Earlier also a statue of Ambedkar was broken in Gorakhpur
on February 28 but there was no action till now in that case
also, he said.
"Ambedkar and Sant Ravi Dass were not only the Dalit
messiah but were revolutionary leaders for the entire society.
It is the responsibility of the state administration and
entire society to ensure that due respect is given to them,"
The Congress member said these developments were taking
place in a state having a Dalit as Chief Minister.
"It is not enough to put up your own statues, icons of
Dalit society should also be respected," he said amid thumping
of desks by Congress members in an obvious reference to
Mayawati who is on a spree of erecting her own statues in
He said the Centre should direct the Mayawati government
to ensure protection of statues of Dalit icons.
Mangni Lal Mandal (JD-U) associated with Punia.