New Delhi [India], January 28 (ANI): The Ministry of External Affairs on Friday said that adequate measures have been taken against the desecration of the Mahatma Gandhi statue in Washington.
"Adequate measures were taken against such attempts. There was also an attempt to desecrate the statue of Mahatma Gandhi in Washington DC," said MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi in a virtual weekly media briefing.
India had lodged a strong protest with the US law enforcement agencies against the "mischievous act" by "Khalistani elements" who masqueraded as protesters and defaced the statue of Mahatma Gandhi in Washington in December 2021.
According to a statement by the Indian Embassy, "The statue of Mahatma Gandhi at the Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Plaza in front of the Embassy was defaced by Khalistani elements on 12 December 2020. The Embassy strongly condemns this mischievous act by hooligans masquerading as protesters against the universally respected icon of peace and justice."
"The Embassy has lodged a strong protest with US law enforcement agencies and has also taken up the matter with the US Department of State for an early investigation and action against the culprits under the applicable law," it added.
"We have taken up all these unfortunate incidents with the host government and conveyed our concerns. We have requested a thorough investigation, actions against all those involved and prevention of such incidents from happening in the future," said Bagchi.
The statue of Mahatma Gandhi located in front of the Indian Embassy in Washington was defaced during a protest organised in support of farmers who were agitating against the agricultural laws in India. 'Khalistan' flags were also sighted at the spot.
A yellow coloured flag was seen draped on the head and face of the statue along with cardboard cutouts and placards propped or pasted on it.
The statue of Mahatma Gandhi was unveiled by then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee on September 16, 2000, in the presence of then US president Bill Clinton.
Following the recent instances where radical elements tried to vandalise diplomatic premises abroad and disrupt the functioning of the missions, Bagchi said, "We attach utmost priority to the security of our diplomats abroad and the premises in which they work and live in. We work closely with local authorities and host governments to ensure that adequate security is provided." (ANI)