New Delhi, Nov 1 (UNI) Alleging Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and BSP chief Mayawati's hand behind the reported vandalisation of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel's statue in Pratapgarh district of the state, the ruling UPA's new ally Samajwadi Party (SP) today demanded firm action of the Centre against those responsible for insulting such a great leader of the country.
Addressing a press conference here, SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav said they had received a report from their MP Akshay Pratap Singh that the place where Saradar Patel's statue had been installed had been bulldozed by authorities and his statue had disappeared from there.
''If the district magistrate has done this or he has been instructed to do this by Ms Mayawati, both should be arrested,'' he said.
According to the SP chief, the statue of Sardar Patel had been installed at the Gram Sabha land four months ago and was to be unveiled on his birth anniversary yesterday.
However, as the SP MP, along with party workers, went to pay tribute to the statue, they found that the whole place had been vandalised and the statue removed from there, said Mr Yadav.
''Sardar Patel had accomplished the Herculean task of uniting the country by reorganisation of the states, and had contributed greatly in the framing of the Constitution. That such a leader sould be meted out such a treatment in his own country was a matter of shame, so the Centre should ensure firm action against those behind the incident,'' he said.
Replying to a question, he said the motive behind vandalisation of the place might be occupation of the land.
''Perhaps, Ms Mayawati wants to install her own statue on the place,'' added SP General secretray Amar Singh, joining in his party chief.
In fact, Ms Mayawati was destroying the legacy of independence as she had already spitted venom against the ''Father of the Nation,'' Mahatama Gandhi, describing him as ''anti-dalit'', he said.
Mr Yadav said Ms Mayawati had been on a bulldozing spree, ever since she had come to power in the state.
He said he had given a call to his party workers to stage a dharna at all the district headquarters on November 5 against the Pratapgarh incident.
Replying to a question on the delay in arriving at a seat adjustment between the SP and its ally Congress for the Lok Sabha elections in Uttar Pradesh, Mulayam Singh said, talks were going on and ''it will happen''.
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