Bhopal: The All India Congress Seva Dal stoked controversy with a booklet in which it claimed that the freedom fighter and Hindu Mahasabha co-founder Vinayak Damodar Savarkar was in a “homosexual relationship” with Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin Nathuram Godse.
The book titled ‘Veer Savarkar Kitne Veer? (Veer Savarkar, How Brave?)’ was distributed among volunteers during the inauguration of the Seva Dal national training camp in Bhopal’s Bairagarh on Thursday.
The book claims that Savarkar was in a relationship with Godse and says that he had exhorted men to rape women of minority communities. It also blames RSS and Savarkar for the partition of the country in 1947.
While quoting an instance mentioned in Dominique Lapierre and Larry Collins’s book ‘Freedom at Midnight’, the booklet claims, “Prior to adopting Brahmacharya, there is only one mention of Godse’s physical relationship. He had a homosexual relationship with his political mentor Veer Savarkar.”
Page 14 of the booklet also claims, “Savarkar also used to exhort Hindu men to rape minority women.” The booklet also laid blame on Savarkar for coming up with the two-nation theory, which sowed the seeds of partition.
“Savarkar and his friends used to dance in jubilation whenever they learnt about Muslims getting killed in communal riots,” the booklet reads.
In a second booklet, titled ‘RSS aur BJP, Kuchh Tathya aur Jankari (RSS and BJP, Some Facts and Information)’ the Seva Dal claims that the organisation from the outset derived inspiration from fascism and Nazism. “RSS always idolised noted dictators –Hitler and Mussolini, the dictators of 1930s and 1940s,” the booklet reads.
BJP spokesperson Rajneesh Agrawal hit out at Congress over the contents of the booklet saying that the party often distorts and spread misinformation. On charges of the RSS following Hitler and Mussolini, Agrawal said the RSS came into existence in 1925.
He further urged Congress to compile the correct historical facts and said that it in fact the late PM Indira Gandhi who had issued a postal stamp on Savarakar calling him a freedom fighter.
The Congress Sevadal National President Lalji Desai defended the contents of the booklet and said that they are based on facts. “It is important for the public to know the reality of the people who are presented as heroes by the BJP,” Desai said.
He was also quoted by ANI as saying, "In our country today, everyone has legal right to have their own preferences."
Incidentally, the RSS national executive committee is meeting in Indore on Thursday.