MUMBAI — He is the revered father of Indian independence, and it was what would have been his 150th birthday. And nevertheless, on Wednesday, vandals attacked a memorial to Mohandas K. Gandhi, painted “traitor” in lurid inexperienced throughout his photograph, and may perhaps have stolen some of his ashes.

Police officers in Rewa, in central India, site of the memorial, claimed they thought it was an inside of job due to the fact there were no signals of a crack-in and the thick inexperienced paint defacing Gandhi’s image was getting utilised by workmen at the memorial.

Supplied Gandhi’s status as a titan of tranquil resistance, the vandalism might appear to be unthinkable. But it appeared rooted in the type of Hindu nationalism that motivated his assassin in 1948, and which has been on the rise in India in latest years.

Chanchal Shekhar, Rewa’s inspector general of police, explained that detectives have been getting producing samples from the memorial workers to see if they matched the scrawl discovered on Gandhi’s image.

There ended up popular experiences that a small container of Gandhi’s ashes was lacking from the memorial, suggesting that vandals had taken it. But Mr. Shekhar explained that was still unclear: Although an urn of ashes that the memorial obtained after Gandhi’s loss of life is absent, it may well have been moved several years back.

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