West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Tuesday unveiled a bust of 19th century social reformer Ishwarchandra Vidyasagar, nearly a month after it was vandalised inside Vidyasagar College in Kolkata. The bronze bust was unvieled at a ceremony at the Hare School ground in College Street. It will be reinstalled at Vidyasagar College later in the day. A bronze statue of Vidyasagar will also be installed at the college gate.
On May 14, TMC and BJP workers clashed during a roadshow of BJP leader Amit Shah in Kolkata. The Vidyasagar bust, which was made of plaster of paris, was vandalised in the violence. With the Lok Sabha elections still underway, the incident had caused a furore in Bengal politics, with both BJP and TMC accusing each other of committing the act.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had also promised to build a ‘panchadhatu’ statue of Vidyasagar while he was in campaigning in Bengal. In fact, promises are not just limited to statues. An official of Kolkata Municipal Corporation said they had received requests from several councillors, post the vandalism incident, to name newly-built parks in their area after Vidyasagar.