A day after a protest march by Dalits against the demolition of a Ravidas temple in New Delhi turned violent, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday said she understands the "anguish" of the 16th century mystic poet-saint's supporters.
"We are shocked that the Guru Ravidas temple in Delhi was demolished and understand his supporters' anguish, as the Guru had himself visited and stayed there...," she said in a tweet.
The Chief Minister also said that the "shrine symbolises the Dalits' struggle for their rights and must be rebuilt".
We are shocked that the Guru Ravidas temple in Delhi was demolished and understand his supporters' anguish, as the Guru had himself visited and stayed there. We have great respect for Sant Ravidas. The shrine symbolises the Dalits' struggle for their rights and must be rebuilt— Mamata Banerjee (@MamataOfficial) August 22, 2019
The demolition of the Ravidas temple in a forest area in south Delhi's Tughlakabad on August 10, based on the Supreme Court's orders, has turned political with many parties demanding that the temple be reconstructed either at the same spot or at an alternative location.
On Wednesday, Dalit leader Chandrashekhar Azad and 90 others were arrested after a massive protest in Delhi led to several vehicles being damaged and two motorcycles being set ablaze.
Several people, including 15 police personnel have also been injured.
Chandrashekhar Azad, who heads the Bhim Army, and the others were produced in court today and have been sent to jail for 14 days.
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