- Mahatma Gandhi statue attacked, damaged in Australia
- PM Morrison unveiled this statue a few hours before the attack
- Police engaged in arresting the attackers, PM said – it is shameful
A life-size bronze statue of Mahatma Gandhi, gifted by the Indian government, has been vandalized in Melbourne, Australia. After which the Indian-Australian community across Melbourne has expressed disappointment over the incident. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison himself has condemned the incident and termed it as shameful.
PM Morrison unveiled a few hours ago
The big deal is that Australian PM Morrison unveiled the statue at the Australian Indian Community Center in Rawville, Melbourne, and the incident took place just hours later. This statue was unveiled at an event organized to commemorate 75 years of India’s independence. It was attended by the Consul General of India, Rajkumar and the leaders of Australia along with PM Morrison.
Morrison said – it is shameful, will not be spared
Morrison was quoted as saying in the news on Sunday that it is shameful and extremely disappointing to see this level of disrespect. Attacks on cultural monuments will not be tolerated in this country, he added. Whoever is responsible for this has greatly insulted the Australian Indian community and should be ashamed. This statue was gifted by the Government of India.
Victoria Police in action
Victoria Police said an unknown number of criminals used power tools to cut down the statue between 5:30 p.m. Friday and 5:30 p.m. Saturday, ABC News reported. Police said officers from the Knox Crime Investigation Unit are investigating the case and are urging witnesses to come forward and provide information.
Indian community expressed disappointment
Expressing grief over the incident, the Indian community in the city termed it as an act of low level. ABC News quoted Surya Prakash Soni, president of the Federation of Indian Association of Victoria, as saying that the community is very shocked and saddened. I don’t understand why someone would do such a bad thing.
The attack took place within 24 hours of exposure
He said that the Roville Center is the first Indian community center in the state of Victoria and was established after 30 years of effort. Australia India Community Charitable Trust chairman Vasan Srinivasan said he was saddened that someone tried to demolish the statue within 24 hours of its unveiling.
About 3 lakh Indians in the state of Victoria
SBS News quoted him as saying that there are about 3,00,000 Indians living in the state of Victoria and I never thought that this could happen in Victoria. Srinivasan said that due to heavy rains throughout the day, the police could not find fingerprints.