Statue of Ranjit Singh vandalised in Lahore, 2 held

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Staff Report

Lahore

A statue of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, who ruled over Punjab for close to 40 years in the early 19th century, was vandalised by two men in Lahore Pakistani city.

The nine-foot statue, made of cold bronze, was unveiled at the Lahore Fort in June on the 180th death anniversary of Maharaja. Singh, the first Maharaja of the Sikh Empire, died in 1839.

The statue showed the regal Sikh emperor sitting on a horse, sword in hand, complete in Sikh attire.

The incident occurred on Saturday when the Qila had been routinely opened for visitors.

Two men — one pretending to have a leg disability carrying a wooden rod and another “helping him to walk” — entered the Qila.

Both men went straight to the statue and started hitting it with the wooden rods, resulting in the breakage of one of its arms and damage to other parts of the statue.

Security guards rushed to the spot and captured the attackers who were chanting slogans against the former rule of the Punjab.

Later, the attackers were handed over to the police, who registered a case against them on the complaint of Walled City Authority.

Superintendent of Police (SP) Syed Ghazanfar Shah said that investigation revealed that the attackers were claiming to be reincarnations of Sultan Mehmood Ghaznavi — a famous warrior in South Asian history.