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Protest against `removal' of portraits of Ambedkar, Indira

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IN PROTEST: Members of political parties and Dalit organisations taking out a procession in Gulbarga on Sunday.
IN PROTEST: Members of political parties and Dalit organisations taking out a procession in Gulbarga on Sunday.

Special Correspondent

Dalits and others seek apology from Deputy Chief Minister Yediyurappa

GULBARGA: Members of various political parties and Dalit organisations on Sunday staged a demonstration here in protest against the alleged removal of the portraits of Ambedkar and former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on the directions of Deputy Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa from his office in the Secretariat.

Leaders of the Congress, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPI-M), the Republican Party of India (RPI), the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), the Dalit Sangharsh Samiti (DSS) (Sagar), the Dalit Sangharsh Samiti (Ambedkar Vada), the Dalit Sena, the Dalit Panthers and the socio-cultural organisation, Samudaya, who took out a procession from the Vallabhbhai Patel Chowk to the Ambedkar statue at Jagat Circle, burnt an effigy of Mr. Yediyurappa.

Prominent among those who participated in the procession were Maruti Manpade, State Secretariat Member of the CPI(M), D.G. Sagar, State Convenor of the DSS (Sagar), A.B. Hosmani, State Secretary of the RPI (Atwale), Prakash Moolabharathi, State Secretary of RPI (Jogendra Kawade), Suryakant Nimbalkar, district President of the BSP, Nandakumar Malipatil, former Deputy Mayor, Ravi Rathod, corporator, (both from Congress), Hanumanth Yelsangi, Dalit Sena President, and Vittal Doddamani and Srinivas Moolabharathi, Dalit leaders.

Several postgraduate students of Gulbarga University also participated in the procession in which slogans demanding the dismissal of Mr. Yediyurappa from the Ministry were raised.

Later, the leaders addressed the gathering.

In a memorandum addressed to the Governor T.N. Chautrvedi and submitted to the Headquarters Assistant to the Deputy Commissioner, Ravi Kiran Vanti, a Dalits forum termed the incident as an insult to the nation and demanded an unconditional apology from Mr. Yediyurappa.

The memorandum also urged Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy to drop Mr. Yediyurappa from the Ministry.

They set February 8 as deadline for Mr. Yediyurappa tendering an apology and warned that they would launch an agitation demanding his ouster from the Ministry.

They also threatened that Ministers will not be allowed to visit Gulbarga district if Mr. Yediyurappa does not tender an apology.

Meanwhile, postgraduate students belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes have given a call for boycotting classes of Gulbarga University on Monday.

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