Protesters disrupt Nathuram Godse family function; book launch cancelled

Since 1950, every year on this day, family members and their friends come together under the “Hutatma Nathuram Godse Icchapatra Nyaas” to perform their annual rituals.

Written by Chandan Haygunde | Pune | Updated: November 16, 2015 12:51 pm
Nathuram godse, mahatma gandhi assassination, 66th death anninversary, nathuram godse death anniversary, martyr saint, book launch, mumbai news Family members and supporters pay homage to Nathuram Godse on his 66th death anniversary. (Express photo by Sandeep Daundkar)

Family members of Nathuram Godse, the man who assassinated Mahatma Gandhi, held a program on Sunday to commemorate his 66th death anniversary. But they could not release a book that calls Nathuram a “Martyr Saint” as groups of youths gathered and shouted slogans outside Anandi Vilas building in Shivajinagar, the residence of a Godse family member, where the prgramme was being organised.

Nathuram was hanged on November 15, 1949. Since 1950, every year on this day, family members and their friends come together under the “Hutatma Nathuram Godse Icchapatra Nyaas” to perform their annual rituals and pledge to work for the cause of “Akhanda Bharat” or Undivided India. Family members call it “Balidan Divas” (Martyrdom Day).

Share This Article
Related Article

The venue for the programme this year was Anandi Vilas building. Godse believed that one day his dream of “Akhanda Bharat” would come true and the Sindhu River, which became a part of Pakistan after partition, would again flow through India. Godse’s dying wish was to immerse his ashes in the Sindhu River when it comes under the Indian flag.

The family has maintained his ashes from generation to generation till now. The ashes were kept in a pot in front of the “Akhanda Bharat” image with Nathuram Godse’s picture in the middle. Pictures of revolutionary Veer Savarkar who started the Abhinav Bharat in 1905 for raising an armed struggle against the British, and four other conspirators of Mahatma Gandhi assassination-Gopal Godse, Narayan Apte, Vishnu Karkare and Madanlal Pahwa-were also displayed. Over 100 people, mainly family members and friends of the Godse family, had gathered to pay homage to Nathuram.

While a participant named Keertankar Charudatta Aphale was delivering a speech, a group of youths gathered outside and raised slogans in favour of Mahatma Gandhi. Cops were already deployed on the spot, and an additional force reached the place in some time to ensure that there is no law and order situation.
Apparently, the plan to release a book on Nathuram, which calls him a “Martyr Saint”, during the function was canceled. Police sources said that some of these youths are associated with political and social outfits oppposed to the BJP and RSS.

A family member named Ajinkya Godse said, “Cops requested us not to release the book. We agreed to it. I live in Anandi Vilas. This is a family program in our parking. So nobody should have any objections. We are going to release a range of books in the near future.”
A protestor named Abhijit Mhaske said, “We know that the Godse family has the constitutional right to conduct this function. But they circulated messages of the function on social media. They had plans to release a book on Nathuram Godse. It spreads a wrong message in society. So we are protesting against it peacefully. We are like-minded youths. We are not representing any organisations.”

The Godse family, however, called the protest a publicity stunt. Satyaki Savarkar, son of Nathuram’s neice Himani Savarkar, who passed away recently, said, “Even Nathuram Godse had expressed his respect for Mahatma Gandhi. We are conducting the program every year and it is not against Mahatma Gandhi. We are pledging for Akhand Bharat. We will continue to do so despite objections.”

Every year, during the “Balidan Divas” programme, Hutatma Nathuram Godse Icchapatra Nyaas has been giving awards and mementos to people who they feel have given valuable contribution to the Hindutva movement. “This year, no award has been given out due to Himani Savarkar’s death,” said Satyaki, who is also an office bearer of Hindu Mahasabha.
Himani is a former president of Hindutva outfit Abhinav Bharat, members of which are accused of being involved in the Malegaon bomb blast of 2008.

For all the latest Cities News, download Indian Express App

  1. G
    Nov 16, 2015 at 12:38 pm
    Anybody wants to return his / her award for this intolerance?
    1. G
      Nov 17, 2015 at 12:27 am
      So where is the so called tolerance? Why are the intellectuals now silent and not coming forth to save freedom of speech??? Why not the nasty communists hold dharna for this? Will Sonia go on a rally against this disrupt? Will the presutes give huge cry for this nonsense of intolerance???
      1. D
        Deepak sharma
        Nov 16, 2015 at 10:33 pm
        he has written a book explaining why he killed hi. we may read that book.
        1. G
          Gurram Madhava Krishna Sarma
          Nov 17, 2015 at 7:12 pm
          Where is the 'intolerence' brigade now ?
          1. M
            Nov 17, 2015 at 3:49 am
            Hindus don't have freedom of expression. Period.
            1. M
              Nov 16, 2015 at 11:57 pm
              That was tolerance or intolerance -- will "intellectuals" and "rationalists" and "historians " and "scientists" with awards in their possession -- return them ? Will the Congis stage a drama march to the President ?
              1. M
                Nov 17, 2015 at 12:09 am
                The fact of the matter is that Nehru & Co were so afraid of how people would react if they heard Godse speak -- they denied him a trial by jury to which he was enled to. I am sure you have not read Godse's statement in Court or you are a non Hindu both qualify you for the remarks you have made. However this is what Justice G D Khosla one of the judges of the Punjab High Court who had heard Godse's case had to say later about him ".... I have, however, no doubt that had the audience of that day been consuted into a jury and entrustred with the task of deciding Godse's appeal, they would have brought a verdict of "not Guilty"by an over whelming majority..."
                1. M
                  Nov 17, 2015 at 12:03 am
                  Where did you come in from -- the rain ?
                  1. Load More Comments