Lucknow: Hours after a huge marble statue of Mayawati was broken, the government announced a new one, just like it, will be installed in Lucknow. The gesture is an attempt by chief minister Akhilesh Yadav to keep the calm in his capital.
It was a tense day for the capital of Uttar Pradesh after the four-foot-high statue was destroyed by vandals. The head and hands were removed, so was the replica of the large purse that Mayawati is rarely seen without.
The replica was created for another memorial in Lucknow - the Kanshi Ram Green Eco Garden - but was never installed.
Officials say that this statue will be polished and installed tonight at the same place where the defaced statue stands.
When the attack on the statue was reported, the former chief minister of Uttar Pradesh appealed to her party workers not to retaliate. Pamphlets left behind at the damaged statue referred to a group called the UP Navnirman Sena.
The statue was placed outside the Ambedkar Memorial constructed by Mayawati as a tribute to Dalit leaders including herself and her mentor, Kanshi Ram.
The statues that Mayawati commissioned were widely criticised during her term in office - she was also taken to court to explain why taxpayers were funding her replicas.
When 39-year-old Mr Yadav defeated her in the state elections earlier this year, he promised that her statues would not be broken.
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