Protesters in a town in Madhya Pradesh took to streets to express their disapproval against the Congress-led government in the state for uprooting a statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj allegedly in an outrageous manner in Sausar town in Madhya Pradesh’s Chhindwara district.
As per sources, Shiv Sena and some other organisations had written to the local administration, requesting them to install a bust of Shivaji Maharaj in Mohgaon Square intersection in the town. The Municipal Councillor visited the town after receiving the letter and earmarked a place for the installation of the statue. However, after experiencing inordinate delay from the administration in the installation of the statue, the organisations took it upon themselves to erect the statue at the designated place. The organisation constructed a platform on the said site and installed the bust themselves on Monday night.
When the local authorities came to know that the organisations installed the bust themselves, they tried to uproot the statue at night citing no administration approval to erect a bust at the said site. The authorities tried to demolish the statue with the help of a JCB which sparked outrage in the region.
The locals present at the site didn’t allow the bust to fall. As soon as the news of authorities trying to insultingly knockdown Shivaji’s bust ran through the town, a raft of people swarmed the site in protest against the administrative action. The gathered people also jammed the Chhindwada Nagpur highway.
The Chhindwara ADM Rajesh Shahi while speaking to ANI claimed that the bust was put up on the government land on Monday night without approval and it was subsequently stopped by the authorities.
“An authorisation has to be sought from the administration for installing statues. SDM Sausar had apprised me that some people are installing a statue without any approval. Later, a meeting with stakeholders including organisations who were involved in the installation of the bust was conducted and everyone agreed that due process will be followed for installing the bust,” Shahi said.
छत्रपति शिवाजी महाराज राष्ट्र का गौरव हैं,हमारे आराध्य हैं व देश की प्रेरणा के स्रोत हैं।
उनका अपमान किसी भी कीमत पर सहन नहीं किया जायेगा।अगर आपत्ति थी तो उनकी प्रतिमा को सम्मानजनक तरीके से भी हटाया जा सकता था लेकिन यह सरकार तो महापुरुषों का अपमान करने में गर्व का अनुभव करती है। pic.twitter.com/7shlvhjLdq
— Shivraj Singh Chouhan (@ChouhanShivraj) February 12, 2020
Tweeting a video of the bust being removed, former Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chauhan said that Shivaji is the pride of the nation and his humiliation will not be tolerated at any cost. He said that if there were issues with the installation, it could have been removed respectfully. “But this government takes pride in insulting great men,” he added.
He also demanded that MP CM Kamal Nath should apologise for the incident and asked to arrange for installing the bust. He also questioned Shiv Sena, asking whether they will tolerate such an insult to Shivaji.
State Congress spokesman Pankaj Chaturvedi has rejected the allegations, saying that JCB was used to remove the bust because the platform on which it was installed was very strong. He said it was placed in a haphazard manner causing disruptions in traffic. He assured that the bust will be installed in a respectful manner after completing due formalities in a proper place.
Local Congress MLA Vijay Choure said that Sausar municipality on Tuesday approved a proposal to re-install the bust at the same intersection.