Row over Mihir Bhoj’s legacy escalates in poll-bound MP
Arow between Rajputs and Gujjars over legacy of 9th century king Mihir Bhoj has escalates once again in poll-bound Madhya Pradesh.
Tension prevailed after some people on Monday attempted to remove the ‘Gurjar’ title prefixed with Mihir Bhoj’s name inscripted on a plinth of a life-size statue of the king in Gwalior.
The statue was installed by Gwalior Municipal Corporation at Chirwai block in the city back in 2019.
The Kshatriya or the Rajput community claims that Mihir Bhoj belongs their community and thus use of ‘Gurjar’ title with his name hurts the community’s sentiments.
Last year also, a massive scuffle had broken out between Rajputs and Gurjars, following which curfew was imposed in Gwalior.
Meanwhile, a couple of petitions from both sides were filed before the Gwalior bench of the Madhya Pradesh High Court backing their claims over the king’s legacy.
The bench of Justices Anand Pathak and Sheel Nagu hearing a petition had then asserted that “such clashes not only affect the law and order situation but also violate the principle of fraternity which is a cherished virtue in our Constitution”.
A committee of experts was also constituted to determine the historical claims made by the two communities and the police and district administration were directed to barricade the area (place where statue is installed).
The matter is currently subjudice and the expert committee is yet to submit its report.
On Monday, two youths removed the barricades and barged on the cemented platform (surface of the statue). They tried to erase the ‘Gurjar’ mentioned before Mihir Bhoj’s name inscripted on the plinth.
The entire incident was recorded in CCTV footage.
On Tuesday, police claimed that two persons involved in the matter have been arrested.
Notably, both — Rajputs and Gurjars – have a significant population in Gwalior, Shivpuri and Morena districts.
Morena is located at the border of Dholpur district of Rajasthan, where the Gurjar community has strong domination. The row on Mihir Bhoj’s legacy is not limited to Madhya Pradesh; it also has presence in neighbouring Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan.
In fact, disputes between the two communities over the issue were also reported in Delhi-NCR. Reports suggest that contention over the same was escalated in Haryana last month.