Congress leader and Malavalli MLA PM Narendra Swamy filed a complaint against Bharatiya Janata Party leader CT Ravi on Tuesday, alleging that he disrespected the national flag.
While reacting to the removal of a saffron flag bearing an image of Lord Hanuman from a flagpole in Keragodu by Mandya district authorities, CT Ravi told ANI on Monday: “Today the Congress wants to remove the Hanuman flag and install the Taliban flag… We will install the Hanuman flag today. The times of Taliban flags have passed.”
The Congress MLA filed the complaint with N Yatish, Superintendent of Police, Mandya, over this comment by CT Ravi.
The officials from the Mandya district removed the saffron flag bearing an image of Lord Hanuman from a 108-foot flagpole in Keragodu village on Sunday. The local gram panchayat has said that permission was given to the Sri Gowri Shankar Seva Trust, which erected the flagpole, only to hoist either the national tricolour or the Kannada flag.
However, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Janata Dal-Secular (JDS) conducted a protest rally from the village to the District Collector’s office, demanding that the flag be hoisted back.
Over this issue, Karnataka minister Priyank Kharge on Tuesday accused the BJP leaders and their “masters” in the RSS of placing religion and the party above the nation.
“It is extremely obvious that for the @BJP4Karnataka & their masters RSS, it is always self, organization, party & religion above the Nation,” Priyank Kharge posted on X.
“In his final address to the Constituent Assembly, Babasaheb Ambedkar spoke about prioritizing creed over the nation and issued us a warning,” Priyank Kharge wrote in the post.
“Will history repeat itself? It is this thought which fills me with anxiety. This anxiety is deepened by the realization of the fact that in addition to our old enemies in the form of castes and creeds. We are going to have many political parties with diverse and opposing political creeds. Will Indians place the country above their creed or will they place the creed above the country? I do not know. But this much is certain if the parties place creed above country, our independence will be put in jeopardy a second time and probably be lost forever. This eventuality we must all resolutely guard against. We must be determined to defend our independence with the last drop of our blood,” Kharge quoted Ambedkar.
In his response to the issue, Chief Minister Siddaramiah had said that it was not right to hoist the Bhagwa flag instead of the Indian flag.
Accusing the BJP of plotting against the state government by intimidating people in the village, the Chief Minister said, “It is no accident that the Hanuman flag is hoisted where the national flag should have been hoisted, deliberately violating the rules and protesting against the government.”
“This incident is a pre-arranged act of the BJP and Sangh Parivar. Such a situation has been created with the intention of systematically raising the people against the state government. There is no doubt that the plot to create communal riots in Mandya is a preparation for the Lok Sabha elections by the BJP leaders,” Siddaramaiah claimed.
The Chief Minister said that his government is committed to maintaining peace and order in society.