Book on Godse back on stands

‘Revised edition into its second print run’

December 23, 2014 03:28 am | Updated November 16, 2021 04:50 pm IST - NEW DELHI:

Bust of Nathuram Godse at the central office of Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha. Photo: V. Sudershan

Bust of Nathuram Godse at the central office of Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha. Photo: V. Sudershan

Over two decades after it was first published, the first revised English edition of “Why I Assassinated Gandhi” – which includes Nathuram Godse’s statement before the court at the Red Fort trial in its “unabridged form,” the judgment and his will – is back in circulation.

The revised edition has been compiled and edited by Virender Mehra, who, in his note, said: “After having read Nathuram Godse’s statement reproduced by his brother Gopal Godse, I felt the need to compile Gopal Godse’s work with Justice [G.D.] Khosla’s narrative.”

Farsight Publishers and Distributors — which brought out the revised edition six months ago in arrangement with Surya Bharti Prakashan, the original publishers of the book in 1993 — maintained that they took up the task because “both sides” of the assassination should come out. The ban on Nathuram Godse’s statement to the special court was lifted by the Bombay High Court in 1968.

Gopal Godse brought out the book to present his brother’s statement at the trial in its “unabridged form” on the premise that the law gives a “special kind of sanctity” to dying declarations. “The statement of Nathuram Godse, in the circumstances in which it was made, commands itself to no less a sanctity,” said the book.

Recent statements relating to Nathuram Godse by members of the Sangh Parivar have helped move the book to prominent spots in book stores. Vijay Goel, owner of the Delhi-based Farsight Publishers and Distributors, told The Hindu: “We brought out this book six months ago. Surya Bharti Prakashan deals in Hindi books and so their English version of ‘Why I Assassinated Gandhi’ had mistakes. As a result, it was not selling well. We have been publishing in English and, so, I offered to clean it up and bring out a revised edition.”

According to Surya Bharti Prakashan representatives, the book was never out of print but did not sell much in English. “We used to bring out one reprint every year.” The revised edition is now already into its second print run.

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