On Saturday, the Madhya Pradesh police registered an FIR against a member of the Akhil Bhartiya Hindu Mahasabha (ABHM) and his associates for circulating pamphlets carrying “objectionable language” about Mahatma Gandhi and glorifying Naturam Godse.
According to the reports, in November, members of Hindu Mahasabha distributed pamphlets in Daulatganj area of Gwalior. The pamphlets praised Nathuram Godse, the assassin of MK Gandhi. While observing the death anniversary of Godse, ABHM also demanded that his statements during the assassination trial be included in school syllabus in the Madhya Pradesh.
A case has now been registered on the complaint of Gwalior-based social activist and ruling Congress worker Ravindra Chauhan. In his complaint, Chauhan alleged that the pamphlet described Mahatma Gandhi as the person who was responsible for the country’s partition and justified the January 30, 1948 assassination by Godse.
The police said that a case has been registered against Hindu Mahasabha leaders under the section 153A of IPC – promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony. The police said efforts are underway to arrest them.
Meanwhile, Hindu Mahasabha national vice-president Jaiveer Bharadwaj said that registration of the case shows the “dictatorial attitude” of the Congress-led government in the state.
“I am not aware of the case, but we will present our side in a court of law. We will also hold programmes like the one organised on Friday inside our houses. We have rights to organise ‘Puja’ in our houses,” Bharadwaj reportedly said.
On the occasion of 70th death anniversary of Godse, the members of the Hindu Mahasabha had performed ‘aarti’ or prayer service for Godse and Narayan Apte, the co-conspirator who was also sentenced to death in Gandhi assassination case.
After the program, the Hindu Mahasabha leaders met the local administration representatives and submitted a memorandum addressed to CM Kamal Nath to fulfil their four demands. “The memorandum contains four demands, including the demand to include in the state’s school curriculum Nathuram Godse’s last recorded statements before the trial court, which will educate our young generations about his real nationalistic persona,” a leader said.
In their memorandum, the Hindu Mahasabha also said that the martyrdom of tenth Sikh Guru Gobind Singh’s two sons, who were tortured and then executed by burying them alive into a wall over their refusal to convert to Islam be observed as Bal Shahid Diwas similar to the celebration of Bal Diwas on the occasion of Jawaharlal Nehru’s birth anniversary.
On November 15, 1949, Nathuram Godse was hanged to death at Ambala jail. The Hindu Mahasabha, which is active since its inception in 1915, had created a controversy after it had installed a bust of Godse at its Gwalior after performing a prayer ritual in November 2017.