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Saturday, November 27, 2021

Pune: PMC to give Rs 1 cr for beautification of Jay Stambh at Koregaon Bhima

Notably, in 2018, organisers of a programme held to mark the bicentenary of the Bhima-Koregaon battle were booked under stringent laws after violence broke out during the event.

Written by Ajay Jadhav | Pune |
Updated: November 25, 2021 7:43:27 am
“The Kranti Stambh at Bhima-Koregaon is a symbol of bravery," Hemant Rasane said. (File Photo)

THE BJP-ruled Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has allocated Rs 1 crore for the beautification of the Jay Stambh in Koregaon Bhima area. The decision is bound to raise some eyebrows as several right-wing organisations associated with BJP question the annual celebration of the Battle of Bhima Koregaon which, they say, is a “deliberate attempt to pit Dalits against Brahmins”.

Jay Stambh is a memorial to mark the anniversary of the battle, in which the Dalit Mahar regiment of the British Army had defeated Peshwa’s armed forces.

“The Jay Stambh at Koregaon Bhima is a symbol of bravery. Thus, the civic standing committee has approved Rs 1 crore from civic funds for beautification and development of the area around it,” said Hemant Rasane, chairperson of PMC standing committee.

He said lakhs of Dalit followers visit the memorial on January 1, the anniversary of the battle, and it is necessary to provide them better civic facilities. The resolution for undertaking the work was tabled by BJP corporators Rahul Bhandare and Mahesh Wabale.

“The memorial is a symbol of bravery and leaders from political, social, education fields visit it on January 1 every year, along with a large number of Dalit followers,” Bhandare said, adding that visitors face inconvenience due to lack of basic civic amenities.

In another decision, the civic panel approved Rs 2.35 crore for providing scholarships of Rs 51,000 each to civic school students who have either scored 85 per cent and above in Class 10, or 80 per cent and above in Class 12 in 2020-21. The Shardabai Pawar scholarship scheme of PMC enables financial assistance to meritorious students every year and the civic body had made provision of Rs 1.5 crore for it in the current financial year.

“As many as 158 Class 10 students and 303 Class 12 students of civic schools have qualified for the scholarship. A total of 461 eligible students need to be given the Rs 51,000 scholarship…,” Rasane said.

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