After statue row, flags burnt, portrait defaced

Amid continuing tensions over defacing of statues and subsequent arrests, instances of burning Kannada flags were reported in Belagavi district and at Kolhapur in Maharashtra.

Published: 21st December 2021 05:57 AM  |   Last Updated: 21st December 2021 05:57 AM   |  A+A-

Karnataka Rakshana Vedike members protest in front of the Sangolli Rayanna statue in Bengaluru on Saturday | shriram bn

By Express News Service

BELAGAVI: Amid continuing tensions over defacing of statues and subsequent arrests, instances of burning Kannada flags were reported in Belagavi district and at Kolhapur in Maharashtra. Also, a portrait of 12th century reformer Basavanna was defaced.

According to villagers, a Kannada flag hoisted in front of the gram panchayat office at Halasi village in Khanapur taluk was allegedly burnt by some miscreants and a portrait of Basaveshwara on a wall of the panchayat office was disfigured when no one was around.

On Monday morning, when the incident came to the notice of the villagers, they immediately informed the Nandgad police station. With the help of the police, they later put up a new Kannada flag in front of the gram panchayat office and also cleaned the portrait. 

Condemning the incident, the villagers have urged the police to arrest those responsible. The Nandgad police have registered a suo motu case and are investigating further. Halasi village has a long history and was part of the Kadamba kingdom.

Meanwhile, political leaders in Maharashtra have continued to add fuel to the fire. A group of Congress 
workers allegedly burnt a Kannada flag in Kolhapur on Monday. Shouting slogans against the Karnataka government and condemning the defacement of the Shivaji statue in Bengaluru, the protesters first blackened a Kannada flag and burnt it. Only last week, a group of Shiv Sena workers had burnt a Kannada flag in Maharashtra. 

State intelligence dept is dead: Siddaramaiah
belagavi: Congress leader Siddaramaiah on Monday visited Anagol in Belagavi where the statue of freedom fighter Sangolli Rayanna was desecrated.  “The act is highly condemnable. The issue will be raised in the Assembly too,” he told the media. He said Sangolli Rayanna does not belong to one particular community. “He fought against the British to protect our motherland and proudly sacrificed his life. Police have taken the necessary steps to replace the damaged statue. Now, they should immediately arrest those who were involved in insulting Sangolli Rayanna,” he said.

On Kannada organisations planning to protest against Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti, he said, “Every organisation has the right to protest. MES members are not law-abiding citizens. Law and order has collapsed in Belagavi. The state intelligence department is dead...” 


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