People Will Not Tolerate Insult to the Legacy of Dr. BR Ambedkar
by Hansnath Ram

In the night of 13 April a concrete platform meant to install a Dr. Ambedkar statue next day, on his birth anniversary, in the Block administrative campus of Darauli in Siwan was demolished using bulldozer by the Block development officer himself. The installation of this platform and the statue was funded through the MLA development fund in Darauli and the whole process was duly sanctioned and approved by the administration in 2020-21 year with Rs. Ten lakhs allocated for the job. In spite of this the BDO was present there in half-pants – symbolising RSS uniform, with the JCV machine. Hundreds of people gathered immediately at the site in protest including CPIML MLA comrade Satyadev Ram. The BDO might not have expected such a crowd and he escaped for hiding inside his office. Comrade Satyadev Ram repeatedly called him to come out and talk but he did not turn up.

People captured the JCV machine which was then handed over to the police. CPIML leader in Darauli comrade Lalbahadur Singh who is also an elected Mukhiya, went to lodge an FIR with the police for deliberately damaging government property by the BDO, but this was refused by the police on the pretext that the consent from the district magistrate is needed.

This is not the first time that an Ambedkar statue was targeted in Bihar. In earlier incidents in the same district in Raghunathpur, another Ambedkar statue was painted with black ink and garlanded with footwears, and another incident happened in Babu Bhatakan where cow dung was thrown at the statue, one more incident occurred in Gheni of Chainpur where the eye-glasses were removed from the statue.

Similar incidents are being reported from other districts. In Naubatpur in Patna a statue was desecrated and dismantled in the dark of night at a place not very far from the venue of the ongoing so called religious event of one Baba Bageshwar Dham who gave an open call for building a ‘Hindu Rashtra’. (see box)

The installation of this particular statue was duly sanctioned by Darauli Panchayat Samiti through an official resolution and the money was made available. A statue was acquired for Rs. Two lakhs. On 11 April 23 a letter was sent by the BDO to Mukhiya Lalbahadur Singh that there is no permission given for the installation of the statue inside the Block office campus and if the statue was installed then he may be removed from his Mukhiya post. Anyway, this was duly replied by the Mukhiya clearing all doubts. The upper caste dominant forces in the area backed by BJP conspired to demolish the platform before the state could be installed. The BDO implemented these designs misusing his official status.

The people in the area demanded arrest of the BDO and installation of the statue as was planned and sanctioned. CPIML MLAs, Satyadev Ram from Darauli and Amarjit Kushwaha from Jiradei, along with Lalbahadur Singh met the DM on 24 April who assured to take action but no action was taken till now.

CPIML MLAs sat on a two-day hunger strike and a Mahadharna was held on 15-16 May at Ambedkar Park, Chandrashekhar Chowk. The SDO and ADM arrived at the protest site at around 5 in the evening asking to lift the protest and give them 24 hours to take action, although days have passed and nothing is done in this regard. The senior CPIML leader and ex-MLA Amarnath Yadav concluded the two-day fast in the evening of 16 May after serving juice to the protesters. He declared that the agitation will continue till the castiest erring BDO is booked.

A mass campaign for justice, with nukkad meetings and distribution of thousands of pamphlets, is evoking huge response from the common people. A big mass mobilisation is also being planned if the district administration remains recalcitrant and callous.

Right-wing Assaults on Dalits Continue in Bihar

An Ambedkar statue was attacked and damaged in Naubatpur of Patna on the night of 15 May by antisocial elements. This statue was installed at a function on 14 April 2022 by villagers in Paswan tola in Sarasat village which falls in the Adla panchayat.
On 21 May, CPIML General Secretary Dipankar Bhattacharya visited the area and said the attack is not on the statue of Ambedkar, but on the ideas he had stood for. He said that the attack was organised by those forces who want to establish Hindu Rashtra in country.
"We must not forget the warning of Ambedkar that if Hindu Rashtra becomes a reality  it will be the greatest calamity for this country. This attack in on the very idea of India as envisioned by Ambedkar." added CPIML GS.  
The attack on statue happened in the backdrop of the so-called ‘religious event’ of one Baba Bageshwar Dham which was being held at a nearby place.
Earlier, a CPIML team led by the party's CC member and MLA from Phulwari Sharif Gopal Ravidas visited the affected village on 17 May. The villagers told them the statue was first broken and then uprooted in the dark of night. Comrade Gopal Ravidas met the administration who agreed to reinstall a new statue. Since an first information report has been filed against the unknown persons, he asked to investigate the matter and arrest the accused persons. He said that at Taret Pali, not very far from Sarasat village, a so called Baba has raised very objectionable and unconstitutional demand of Hindu Rashtra and this desecration of Dr. Ambedkar statue was done immediately after that. Hence this cannot be denied that such an attack by frenzied anti-social elements was provoked. Same forces are attacking democracy and the Constitution are perpetrating attacks on Dr. Ambedkar statues.
the Legacy of Dr. BR Ambedkar