Vellore: A statue of social reformer and founder of Dravidian movement E V Ramasamy "Periyar" was allegedly vandalised in Tamil Nadu's Vellore district Tuesday night, police said.
The incident, which the police claimed was perpetrated by two drunk men, assumed political significance as it came after a BJP leader indicated that statues of the rationalist leader could be the next to be pulled down after a statute of Communist icon Lenin was razed by suspected BJP workers in Tripura.
A senior district police officer said that two people, identified as Muthuraman and Francis, damaged the bust at Tirupattur in an inebriated state.
The duo have been arrested, the police said, adding that while Muthuraman was suspected to be a BJP worker, Francis is believed to be a CPI activist.
Earlier, BJP leader H Raja had said in a Facebook post in Tamil said, "Who is Lenin and what is the connection between Lenin and India? What connection India has with Communists? Today Lenin's statue removed in Tripura, tomorrow it will be the statue of EV Ramasamy in Tamil Nadu."
The post was subsequently deleted.
It drew condemnation from several political parties in the state. Political parties including DMK, MDMK and the Left lashed out at Raja, a BJP National Secretary, with DMK Working President M K Stalin leading the charge seeking his detention under the 'Goondas Act'.
BJP's Raja was referring to the pulling down of a statue of communist icon Lenin by some persons using an excavator machine at Belonia in South Tripura district, days after the BJP defeated CPM in the closely fought assembly polls.
The CPM has held BJP workers responsible for pulling down the statue of Lenin.
BJP's state unit distanced itself from the issue, saying it was his personal view.