NEW DELHI: After unknown miscreants desecrated of a statue of Mahatma Gandhi outside the Indian embassy in Washington, US Ambassador to India Ken Juster on Thursday apologised for the incident.
Unknown miscreants vandalised the statue with graffiti and by spraying paint, prompting the Indian embassy officials to register a complaint with the local law enforcement agencies. The incident is reported to have taken place on the intervening night of June 2 and 3.
"So sorry to see the desecration of the Gandhi statue in Wash, DC. Please accept our sincere apologies. Appalled as well by the horrific death of George Floyd & the awful violence & vandalism. We stand against prejudice & discrimination of any type. We will recover & be better," Juster tweeted.
In October 1998, the US Congress had allowed the Indian government to establish and maintain a memorial “to honour Mahatma Gandhi on Federal land in the District of Columbia”. The statue of Mahatma Gandhi was dedicated by former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee during his state visit to the US in 2000. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had paid floral tributes to Gandhi during his visit to Washington in 2014. Former External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj was also present there.
The vandalism of the statue of Gandhi took place in the midst of the nationwide protests in the US against the killing of African-American George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25.
Several of the protests have turned violent which many times has resulted in damage of some prestigious and sacred monuments.
In Washington DC, protesters this week burnt a historic church and damaged some of the prime properties and historic places like the national monument and Lincoln Memorial.