New Delhi: A play celebrating Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin Nathuram Godse has been staged in Banaras Hindu University.
This happened at the three-day cultural festival organized by BHU’s Faculty of Arts called Sanskriti 2018.
After a video of the play went viral, a group of students from the university have filed a complaint with BHU and the district administration to take strict action against those involved in “showing Godse as a hero, and justifying Gandhi’s assassination”.
In the video, students can be heard cheering as the play inspired by Godse’s ‘Maine Gandhi Ko Kyun Maara (Why I killed Gandhi)’ was staged.
It included a dialogue, “Mujhe garv tha main Hindu hoon. Gandhi ahimsa se hinsa karne lage, Mussalmano ka saath diya, nahi dekha gaya, socha Gandhi ko jaana hoga (I was proud of being a Hindu. Gandhi was violent to the idea of non-violence. He stood for Muslims. I could not see it and decided Gandhi will have to go).” It elicited a big applause from the crowd every time it was said.
The cheers grew louder with "Maine Gandhi ko maara (I killed Gandhi)."
Taking note of this, a group of students of Banaras Hindu University complained to the University and the district administration.
In a letter, the students said that the play was part of a conspiracy to tarnish Gandhi’s legacy and needed to be probed. They also pointed out that that the university also had a link with Gandhi as in 1916, the foundation of the university was laid by Gandhi in a speech.
“He laid the foundation for the idea of Satyagrah and enjoyed a good bond with the founder of BHU Madan Mohan Malviya. That Gandhi was insulted in BHU while Godse was eulogized. Yeh rashtradroh se kam nahi (this equals to sedition),” the letter said.
It added that the event hurt the high ideals of the freedom struggle as well as the values of the Constitution and BHU.
Vikas Singh, state president, NSUI, said, “In BHU campus Nathuram Godse is celebrated as a hero, it is very unfortunate.”
News18 tried contacting student advisor Ranjit Pratap Singh but he could not be reached. Dean of the Arts faculty, Srinivas Pande, could not be reached for the comment either.
Chief Proctor Royana Singh told News18, “Yes, we have received a letter from the students and they were upset that Godse was shown as hero. I have forwarded the complaint to the police as well. We are going to check facts of the events and probe the allegations of sedition here.”