On a day the nation observed Mahatma Gandhi’s death anniversary, the Hindu Mahasabha on Sunday paid tribute to his assassin Nathuram Godse and a co-accused in the Gandhi murder trial, Narayan Apte, in Madhya Pradesh’s Gwalior by observing “Godse-Apte Smriti Diwas”.
The right-wing organisation also bestowed “Godse-Apte Bharat Ratna” in Gwalior upon jailed religious leader Kalicharan Maharaj, who was arrested last December for allegedly making derogatory remarks against the Mahatma during a Dharma Sansad held in Chhattisgarh capital Raipur, and four leaders of the Mahasabha.
“We performed ‘aarti’ of Bharat Mata with a resolve to integrate India with Pakistan to make it ‘Akhand Bharat’. We are observing January 30 as the ‘Godse Apte Smriti Diwas’ day to express our anger over their arrest on January 30, 1948,” Hindu Mahasabha’s national vice president Jaiveer Bharadwaj told PTI over the phone from Gwalior.
Bharadwaj said the Mahasabha has honoured Kalicharan Maharaj and four leaders of Hindu Mahasabha with the “Godse-Apte Bharat Ratna” in Gwalior.
“Since Kalicharan Maharaj is in jail, the honour was received by Pramod Lohpatre on his behalf,” Bharadwaj said.
He blamed Mahatma Gandhi for the partition of India in 1947, which he said led to the killing and displacement of lakhs of Hindus.
“People should not be misled into believing that India got independence due to charkha (spinning wheel popularised by Mahatma Gandhi),” he said.
Mahasabha pays tribute and respects all the revolutionaries, he added.
In November 2017, Gwalior district authorities had confiscated Godse’s bust foiling the right-wing outfit’s attempt to turn its office into a ‘temple’ of Godse.
“There is a process of providing ‘Bharat Ratna’ (the highest civilian honour in India) by the Centre. It can’t be given to anybody standing on the road,” he said, adding that there is freedom of expression in the country.