Independent MLA Ramkesh Meena in Congress-ruled Rajasthan hurt the Hindu sentiments last week when he brought down a saffron flag in Amagarh fort that had ‘Jai Shree Ram’ written on it. The video of Meena bringing down the flag and later tearing it to pieces instantly went viral on social media platforms as Hindu organizations took strong objection to Congress-confidante Ramkesh Meena’s actions. Both factions have registered an FIR against each other under IPC section 295 (Injuring or defiling place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class) and sections of the IT Act.
राहुल और प्रियंका जी,आपके गुंडों की अगुवाई में समूचे राजस्थान में हो रहा हिंदुओं का ये महाअपमान ही कांग्रेस के ताबूत में आखिरी कील बनेगा, तुष्टीकरण में अंधी कांग्रेस की तरफ से भगवा ध्वज पर चली हर ईंट का जवाब पत्थर से मिलेगा, इंतजार करिए, जय जय श्रीराम !! pic.twitter.com/JQ9d0NgEk7
— Shalabh Mani Tripathi (@shalabhmani) July 21, 2021
The incident, however, has once again exposed the Ashok Gehlot government for allowing anti-Hindu activities to fester unabated in the state. The incident happened at the Amagarh Fort in Jaipur, which has been a disputed site for long.
Members of the Meena community claim that the 18th-century Amagarh Fort was built by a Meena ruler predating Rajput rule in Jaipur and has been their holy site for centuries. The MLA accused of hurting the religious sentiments of Hindus also claimed that people from his community used to worship Amba Mata and other deities in the fort.
According to a report by The Indian Express which quotes historian Rima Hooja, the present form of the Amagarh Fort was given in the 18th century by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II, founder of Jaipur. “It has always been believed that there was some construction at the place before Jai Singh II built the fort,” she said.
Ramkesh Meena justified his actions of tearing the ‘Bhagwa flag’ by stating, “The Amagarh fort was made by Meena rulers several hundred years ago. Inside the fort, there are several deities worshipped by the Meena community such as Amba Devi, Bhairu ji and Shiv Parivar. Recently, some of these idols were stolen and vandalised. Later, we came to know that some people installed a tall saffron flag over the fort,”
Rajya Sabha BJP MP Kirori Lal Meena on Thursday staged a protest at the Secretariat and demanded action against the culprits whilst submitting a memorandum to the Chief Secretary along with the office bearers of the Adivasi Meena Sangh. He accused the Ashok Gehlot government of protecting the culprits involved in the act.
Meanwhile, an FIR has been filed against Sudarshan TV editor-in-chief, Suresh Chavhanke by Girraj Meena, a member of the Rajasthan Adivasi Meena Seva Sangh, for allegedly making derogatory remarks against the Meena community.
The FIR lodged by Meena stated, “On the evening of July 23, Suresh Chavhanke of Sudarshan TV used insulting slurs against me and our entire tribal community according to his own will and it went on for several days,”
राजस्थान पुलिस ने मुझ पर SC-ST एक्ट के तहत FIR दर्ज की है, वह भी जो मैंने जो कहा ही नहीं उसके लिए. केवल “टीपू सुल्तान पार्टी” ने फैलाई अफ़वाह के आधार पर।
— Suresh Chavhanke “Sudarshan News” (@SureshChavhanke) July 31, 2021
Chavahanke had earlier asserted on Twitter that he will be coming to Amagarh on August 1 to hoist a saffron flag and telecast programmes on his channel over the issue. Meanwhile, Ashok Gehlot and his administration is mum on the issue.