Tribune News Service
New Delhi, 13 October
A day after Defense Minister Rajnath Singh said that “Veer Savarkar wrote mercy petitions at Mahatma Gandhi’s request”, some opposition leaders on Wednesday attacked the minister, alleging that he was “trying to rewrite history”. are”.
Congress leader Jairam Ramesh and AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi shared on Twitter a letter by Gandhi to Savarkar’s brother regarding a case on January 25, 1920, and accused Rajnath Singh of “diverting” what Gandhi wrote. Rajnath ji has given a twist in what Gandhi wrote. Here is the letter written to Savarkar’s brother,” Ramesh said while sharing the letter.
Owaisi said the BJP would soon declare Savarkar as the “Father of the Nation” after the Defense Minister called him a “great hero” of the Indian freedom struggle.
The AIMIM chief said that Savarkar had written the first petition in 1911, six months after he was jailed and Gandhi was then in South Africa. Savarkar wrote again in 1913–14 and Gandhi’s advice dates from 1920.
Historian S Irfan Habib said, “Monochromatic historiography is indeed changing, led by the minister who claims that Gandhi asked Savarkar to write a mercy petition. At least now it is assumed that he wrote.”
Rajya Sabha MP Rakesh Sinha said, “Congress opposes Savarkarji who never unified with the British and displayed supreme sacrifice for the motherland. However, some people used to have regular meals at Mountbatten’s house.”
Criticizing the critics, Vikram Sampath, Savarkar’s biographer, said, “Please look at the collected works of Mahatma Gandhi. In my Vol. 1, I said in 1920, Gandhiji advised the Savarkar brothers to file a petition and Even made a case for his release through an essay in Young India on May 26, 1920.