On his 150th birthday: Mahatma Gandhi's ashes were stolen from his monument

Local police said the remains were taken from his monument in Central India, where they have been held since 1948, the year he was murdered by an extreme Hindu.

On his 150th birthday: Mahatma Gandhi's ashes were stolen from his monument
India's independence movement leader Mahatma Gandhi (Photo: AP)

Police say an investigation is underway. Local Congress leader: "Calls to check security cameras instead". Bapu Bhawan memorial, October 05, 2019.

Mahatma Gandhi's ashes was stolen on his 150th birthday in India - police said. 

The ashes were taken from a memorial in central India, where it has been held since 1948, the year an extreme Hindu assassinated Gandhi's life. 

In addition, the thieves also engraved a "green" traitor over Independence Leader photographs. 

Some Hindu practitioners regard Gandhi as a traitor for his protection of Hindu-Muslim unity, even though Gandhi was a devout Hindu himself.

Police in Riva, in the state of Madhya Pradesh, have confirmed to the BBC that they are investigating the theft on the grounds of "national integration" and a potential breach of peace.

Mangaldeep tiwari the memorial caretaker, said the theft was "disgraceful." "I opened the Bhawan Gate early in the morning because it was Gandhi's birthday.

Mahatma Gandhi's ashes were stolen from his monument
 Mahatma Gandhi (Photo: Image Bank GettyImages)

Police took action after Gurmeet Singh, the leader of the local party in Congress, filed a complaint. "This madness must be stopped," Mr Singh told the Wire. "I urge the police to check CCTV cameras installed inside."

Gandhi led a nonviolent resistance movement against British colonial rule in India, inspiring people around the world. 

Most Indians still admire him as the "Father of the Nation". 

But Hindu people in India accuse Gandhi of betraying, for being too pro-Muslim and the bloodshed that marked the India-Pakistan partition after independence.

Gandhi was murdered by a Hindu extremist in January 1948. After his death, he was burned, but his ashes were not dispersed in the river, in accordance with Hindu belief. 

Because of his fame, some ashes held back and were sent across the country to various monuments - including the one in Bapu Bhawan memorial.