Congress deplores plan to honour Godse

The Mahasabha has already procured a sculpted Godse bust, currently on display at its headquarters in central Delhi’s Mandir Marg

Updated - April 07, 2016 05:04 am IST

Published - December 18, 2014 09:48 am IST - NEW DELHI:

Picture shows the pistol from which Nathuram Godse fired the fatal shots to kill Gandhiji on January 30, 1948.

Picture shows the pistol from which Nathuram Godse fired the fatal shots to kill Gandhiji on January 30, 1948.

The Congress on Thursday accused the BJP and its affiliates of using the “liberty and licence of democracy” to glorify the assassin of the Father of the Nation even as the Hindu Mahasabha revealed its plan to request the government to “revisit the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi.”

Reacting to a report on the Hindu Mahasabha wanting to install the bust of Nathuram Godse, Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin, at public places, the Congress said this was in line with the series of statements and actions that have come from the Sangh Parivar over the past six months.

The Mahasabha, which initially planned to send a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday seeking permission to install Godse’s busts, now wants to meet him personally with an additional request to “revisit the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi.”

The Mahasabha’s national president, Chandra Prakash Kaushik, told The Hindu that a letter demanding that the case be revisited was being drafted. “There needs to be a thorough investigation of the events that led to the assassination, so that vilification of Nathuram Godse ends and the people of this country know that he wasn’t an assassin by choice but was forced to make the decision to kill Gandhi.”

“What is next? A holiday in the memory of Godse,” asked Congress spokesman Abhishek Singhvi, adding that it was a matter of shame that such an issue should even be a part of public discourse.

Last week, BJP MP Sakshi Maharaj, had said Godse was as much a patriot as Mahatma Gandhi. After the Opposition kicked up a row, he apologised in the Lok Sabha.

An effort was made by CPI(M) member P. Rajeeve to draw the attention of the Rajya Sabha to the Mahasabha’s plans, but was asked by the Chair to submit a proper notice.

The Mahasabha, which has already put up Godse’s bust at its headquarters in Central Delhi, wants the permission to install similar busts in at least half-a-dozen metropolitan cities as “Godse was an irreplaceable asset to the intellectual discourse of Hinduism.”

Taking a dig at Mr. Modi’s self-claimed “56 inch chest,” Mr. Singhvi wanted to know why he was not reining in senior party functionaries and the BJP affiliates.

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