Anant Kumar Hegde termed Mahatma Gandhi's hunger strikes and satyagraha a ‘drama’. (Photo Credit: Facebook)
Top Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Leadership has asked its MP Anant Kumar Hegde to issue an unconditional apology for reportedly calling Mahatma Gandhi-led freedom movement a "drama". The Lok Sabha MP from Uttara Kannada while addressing a public event in Bengaluru, said the entire freedom movement was ‘staged with the consent and support of the British’.
"None of these so-called leaders were beaten up by the cops even once. Their independence movement was one big drama. It was staged by these leaders with the approval of the British. It was not a genuine fight. It was an adjustment freedom struggle," news agency ANI quoted Hegde as saying.
Terming Mahatma Gandhi's hunger strikes and satyagraha a ‘drama’, Hegde said: "People supporting Congress keep saying that India got independence because of the fast unto death and satyagraha. This is not true. The British did not leave the country because of satyagraha."
The Congress slammed Anant Kumar Hegde saying the Father of the Nation does not need a certificate from the "cadre of Britishers chamchas and spies. "Mahatma Gandhi does not need a certificate from cadre of Britishers 'chamchas and spies'," Congress spokesperson Jaiveer Shergill said in a tweet.
It is high time the BJP is renamed 'Nathuram Godse Party', he added.
Another Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi tweeted, "Awaiting Narendra Modi who invokes Mahatma Gandhi at the drop of a hat especially when repackaging his ideas and to gain international credibility to comment on Mr Hegde who is a senior BJP Leader."
Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot while condemning Hegde’s remarks tweeted: "BJP MP's statement is condemnable. BJP leaders can afford to call freedom movement a drama only because they never fought for India's independence and never made any sacrifices."
"Such statements reveal their true mindset that they use Gandhi's name just for show and have no regard for him," he said.