A day after the statue of Dravidian movement icon EV Ramasamy, fondly called Periyar, was vandalised in Pudukkottai, a petrol bomb was hurled at the car of BJP district secretary in Coimbatore this morning (March 21).
Although there is no evidence to suggest the two incidents are linked, but what needs to be recalled is that several petrol bombs were thrown at the BJP office in Gandhipuram in Coimbatore hours after a Periyar statue was vandalised in Vellore earlier this month.
There is a reason why the fingers are pointed at the BJP everytime a Periyar statue is vandalised in Tamil Nadu. It all actually started with the razing of Lenin statue in Tripura soon after the BJP won assembly polls in the state.
On the day when Lenin statue was demolished, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) national secretary H. Raja had put out a controversial Facebook post.
"Who is Lenin? What is his connection to India? What is the connection of communists to India? Lenin's statue was destroyed in Tripura. Today Lenin's statue, tomorrow Tamil Nadu's EVR Ramaswami's statue," his post said.
Raja later apologized for his controversial Facebook post and said "The post in my FB was done by one of the admins of my page without my permission. As soon as I came to know about it, I deleted the post. We have to respond through statements and opinions, not through violence."
Raja had then drawn flak from all across Tamil Nadu with the DMK even demanding a police case against him.
Then, on March 7, Periyar's statue at Tirupattur in Vellore was vandalised hours after Raja's controversial Facebook post. Two persons were arrested in connection with the incident.
Born in 1879, Periyar is remembered for the Self Respect Movement to redeem the identity and self-respect of Tamils. He envisaged a Dravida homeland of Dravida Nadu and launched a political party, Dravidar Kazhagam (DK). Periyar is an icon in Tamil Nadu and his statues can be found across the state.