GUWAHATI:The demolition of an yet-to-be-unveiled statue of Saint John Bosco, popularly known as Don Bosco, by the miscreants in Guwahati on Friday evoked condemnation from Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi. An angry Gogoi said, “We understand the sentiments of the locals, but at the same time, we must also acknowledge the contribution made by John Bosco in the fields of education and society”.
Trouble started after the Congress Government had decided to install the statue of 19th century Italian Roman Catholic priest and educationist at a park, which the locals claimed was a patriots’ corner. The government remained firm on installing the statue at the site despite protests from the locals as also the state’s Opposition BJP. “It’s a patriots’ corner. So, we won’t mind if the government installs the statue of a patriot. There were so many from Assam, who had laid down their lives fighting for the country during the freedom movement,” some locals said. They sensed politics in Gogoi’s bid to install Bosco’s statue at the site. “By installing the statue of the saint, who hailed from Italy, the Chief Minister wanted to keep Congress president Sonia Gandhi in good humour,” they said.
The protesters reminded Gogoi and his government that earlier an attempt to install a statue of B R Ambedkar at the site was foiled by the administration.
They asked the government to install the statue of John Bosco at any of the 12 property of Don Bosco society in the state capital.
The society, however, could not be reached for its comment on the issue.