Meerut: When the nation observed the death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, the Akhil Bhartiya Hindu Mahasabha conferred the “Pandit Nathuram Godse-Nana Apte Bharat Ratna” award on seven proponents of “extreme Hindutva”.
The day of Gandhi’s assassination is observed as ‘Shaurya Diwas’ by the Mahasabha.
Announcing the awards on Sunday, Ashok Sharma, vice-president of the right-wing outfit, said: “This is the first time we have conferred this award on those who believe in Godse’s ideology and promote it. The award includes a medal and a commendation letter.”
The recipients include religious leader Kalicharan Maharaj who was arrested on January 12 in Maharashtra for derogatory remarks against Gandhi.
He was granted bail by a Thane court on Friday.
Another recipient is Puja Shakun Pandey who had enacted Mahatma Gandhi’s assassination by shooting at Gandhi’s effigy on his death anniversary in 2019. Pandey was arrested a few days later in Aligarh.
According to Sharma, most of the recipients will receive the commendation by post.
Nishant Jindal, one of the awardees, said: “This commendation will only strengthen my resolve to propagate the nationalism that Godse died protecting.”IANS