Kolkata’s Shahid Minar ‘purified’ with ‘Gangajal’ after Shah’s rally

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Using buckets of water from river Ganga and soap, members of the CPI-M and Congress student arms have ‘purified” the Shahid Minar Maidan where Union Home Minister and former BJP national president Amit Shah held a rally on Sunday.

Accusing the BJP of having “maligned” the historic ground with its ‘supporters’ raising the incendiary “Goli Maro” slogan while marching to the rally venue, the CPI-M affiliated Students Federation of India cadres and Congress loyalist Chhatra Parishad activists jointly carried out the “purification drive”.

“We used soap and water. Our friends from the Chhatra Parishad used Ganga water. Ours is a token protest against the communal tone and the raising of such inflammatory slogan,” said an SFI leader.

Besides the ground, they also washed the base of the landmark Shahid Minar (Martyr’s column) after which the ground gets its name.

A group of people, some of them wearing kurta, and carrying BJP flags, raised the provocative “Goli Maro…” while going in a procession towards the rally venue in central Kolkata.

The inflammatory slogan was first chanted at a public rally addressed by Union Minister and BJP leader Anurag Thakur on January 27 in Delhi’s Rithala area. Thakur had allegedly egged on his audience to respond to the slogan.

Thakur was then barred from campaigning by the Election Commission for 72 hours in the run-up to the February 8 Delhi Assembly polls.

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