Amid the ongoing farmers’ protests in India against the three new farm laws passed by the Centre, the Mahatma Gandhi statue in Washington D.C. was vandalized and defaced by protestors. The statue which stands at the Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Plaza in front of the Indian Embassy is said to be desecrated by “Khalistani elements”, according to the Embassy.
In a rally carried out in front of the Indian Embassy on December 12, the statue was seen draped with a yellow Khalistan flag with various banners and posters. Later, another group joined them and hung a dummy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s picture with a rope around the neck of the statue.
The protests in the United States have been organized by the American-Sikh youths who support the farmers’ cause. Sikhs and other supporters of this cause from Washington and other states like New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Ohio, Maryland and North Carolina have been protesting to show their solidarity with the farmers.
The Indian Embassy condemned the mischievous act by protesters and lodged a strong protest with US law enforcement agencies to seek out an early investigation into the incident. In a statement, the Embassy stated: “The Embassy strongly condemns this mischievous act by hooligans masquerading as protesters against the universally respected icon of peace and justice.” The statue was vandalized earlier this year in June by unknown protestors during the George Flyod protest.
The statue of Mahatma Gandhi was unveiled by then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee on September 16, 2000, in the presence of then US president Bill Clinton.