‘Hindutva’ has a long tradition of celebrating the ‘vadh’ of opponents 

While Ravi Shankar Prasad was forced to condemn the rejoicing on social media about Gauri Lankesh’s killing, he should have remembered that this tradition runs in the blood of the Sangh Parivar

Photo taken from Prasad’s Twitter account
Photo taken from Prasad’s Twitter account

Shamsul Islam

The Information and Technology minister in Narendra Modi’s Cabinet, Ravi Shankar Prasad, a seasoned RSS follower, slammed online trolls for expressing their happiness over the killing of senior journalist Gauri Lankesh. On Twitter, Prasad expressed his anger against those who were celebrating Lankesh’s killing.

Shankar wrote on the social networking site, “I strongly condemn and deplore the messages on social media expressing happiness on the dastardly murder of Gauri Lankesh.”

That was very kind of this minister! But Ravi Shankar Prasad must be specific as to who he is advising. Those trolls celebrating the 'vadh' of Gauri Lankesh on social media and elsewhere are hardened Hindutva practitioners who are for turning the democratic-secular India into a ‘Hindu’ Pakistan. In fact, it has been an old practice of Hindutva practitioners to celebrate the killing of opponents as 'vadh'. They did it after the killings of Narender Dhabolkar, Govind Pansare and Professor MM Kalburgi too.

Not only this, they exhibited the same sadistic tendencies in the wake of assassination of Mahatma Gandhi by ‘Hindu nationalists’. This twisted practice was first brought to notice by the first Home Minister of India, Sardar Patel. Patel, in a letter dated September 11, 1948, to RSS head MS Golwalkar wrote: “The RSS men expressed joy and distributed sweets after Gandhiji’s death.”

If someone believes that the celebrations took place without the knowledge of RSS leadership, they are grossly mistaken. A prominent Hindutva organisation and an RSS ally, Hindu Janajagruti Samiti (HJS), is known for regularly holding national conventions advocating “establishment of a Hindu nation” in India.

In 2013, one such convention was held in Goa. It is to be noted that members of an ally of the HJS, Sanatan Sanstha, has been found to be involved in bomb blasts at Muslim institutions and are under investigation for the murder of renowned secular intellectuals like Govind Pansare and Narendra Dhabolkar. This convention started its proceedings with a felicitation message delivered by then Gujarat CM and current Indian PM Narendra Modi, who wished the HJS all the success in its project of turning India into a ‘Hindu nation’.

Shockingly, from the same dais in this convention from where Modi’s felicitation message was read out, another prominent speaker, KV Sitaramiah, declared that Gandhi was ‘terrible, wicked and the most sinful’.

Rejoicing at the killing of MK Gandhi, he went on to declare, “As Bhagwan Shri Krishna said in the Gita, Paritranaya Sadhunam Vinashaya Cha Dushkritam/ Dharamasansthapnaya Sambhavami Yuge-Yuge (For the protection of the good, for the destruction of the wicked and for the establishment of righteousness, I am born in every age). On the evening of January 30, 1948, Shri Ram came in the form of Nathuram Godse and ended the life of Gandhi.”

KV Sitaramiah has also authored a book titled ‘Gandhi was dharma drohi and desa drohi' in which the text at the back cover, quoting from the epic Mahabharata, demands “dharma drohis must be killed' and "not killing who deserve to be killed is a great sin.

He went to the extent of threatening members of Indian Parliament that "where the members of Parliament were seen as allowing dharma to be killed would be as good as dead.”

Ravi Shankar Prasad must talk to the RSS and other Hindutva organisations to discard this inhuman and barbaric practice.

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