A total of 286 Bombay Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) buses were vandalised in two days -January 2 and 3- in various parts of Maharashtra, during protests against violence over the bicentennial celebration of the Bhima-Koregaon battle.
The stone-pelting at the buses have cost a damage worth Rs 20,51,760, informed the spokesperson of BEST.
The death of a youth in the clashes that broke out between Dalits and alleged right-wing groups over the celebration near Pune triggered violent protests across Maharashtra, wherein cases of vandalism of vehicles were reported in various areas, including Aurangabad, Pune and Nagpur.
Other incidents like road and railway blockage, and arson also took place on the day of statewide bandh called by Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh (BBM) leader and grandson of B.R. Ambedkar, Prakash Ambedkar on January 3.
A total of 16 FIRs were registered by the Mumbai Police relating to statewide bandh.
The violence originated on January 1 when the right-wing groups were objecting to the observance of 'Victory Day' on the 200th anniversary of Bhima-Koregaon battle since they considered it to be an anti-national celebration.
In the battle which was fought between the British East India Company, containing Dalits in its infantry, and the Peshwas, who were upper-caste Brahmins, at Koregaon Bhima on January 1, 1818, the Marathas ultimately withdrew. Since then the lower-caste communities have been viewing it as a symbolic victory for themselves.
- - ANI