Hours after BJP's prime ministerial hopeful Narendra Modi garlanded Madan Mohan Malviya's statue during a mega road show in this Uttar Pradesh town, Congress and Samajwadi party workers washed it with holy water and milk, saying it was desecrated by Modi's touch.
Dozens of workers of the National Students Union of India, Congress' student wing, and Samajwadi Yuvjan Sabha, the Samajwadi Party's youth wing, brought pails of Ganga water and poured it on the bronze statue of Madan Mohan Malviya, the founder of the Banaras Hindu University.
They also washed it with milk because, they said, the statue had been desecrated by Modi, who "has blood of riot victims on his hands", referring to the 2002 Gujarat violence.
At Maldahiyya, where the Gujarat chief minister garlanded the statue of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, the first home minister of Independent India, it too was also similarly washed by the NSUI workers.
BJP leaders, however, said the opposition parties were rattled by Modi's road show Thursday and were hence resorting to mischief.