I’m delighted to read the news about the financial aid provided by the Odisha government to the widow of Raghu Nayak, who showed exemplary bravery decades ago in capturing Nathuram Godse, the killer of Mahatma Gandhi. The help was provided to Nayak’s widow about 33 years after his death, from the chief minister’s relief fund. Naveen Patnaik, the Chief Minister of the state handed over the cheque of Rs.5 lakh to Mandodari Nayak who was accompanied by the Collector of Kendrapara district and her family members. The CM also felicitated her by presenting a shawl at the secretariat.
I don’t remember how many countries around the globe have the dubious distinction where the Father of the Nation was killed by its own people. In the neighboring Pakistan, Qaid-e-Azam as Mr. Jinnah is called there was the victim of belated medical aid in his last hours.
The United States of America has the exceptional record where there had been more than 20 attempts to kill sitting and former Presidents. Four sitting presidents have been killed, all of them by gunshot: Abraham Lincoln (the 16th President), James A Garfield (the 20th President), William McKinley (the 25th President) and John F Kennedy (the 35th President). Two presidents were injured in attempted assassinations, also by gunshot: Theodore Roosvelt (the 26th President) and Ronald Reagan (the 40th President).
Since I’ve neither learned writing in any professional institution nor I’m a professional journalist, I confess I suffer from the disease of topics digression.
The point I wanted to highlight was the initial popularity of Shri Narendra Modi Ji in rich NRI’s of Europe and America. After the coronation of Shri Narendra Modi at Delhi, Grand galas were organized by Modi Bhagats in US and UK and a tepid repeat in UAE also, and Prime Minister used those times to lambast vehemently the previous rulers. It was the period of political ‘honeymoon’ that every victor is entitled for and enjoys. How long that relationship or good times survived or would survive is a matter of conjunction, luck, ability and equations. Wait and watch!
There is a flip side also of this nova. Once you get the brighter lights in foreign Pandals, those who raised the marquee demand their pound of flash. And that has recently been witnessed in election of Mayor of London.
The British Prime Minster David Cameron wrote any article in British press under the heading ‘The British Indian Community Makes London Great.’ Shri Cameron wrote: “The British Indian community makes an extraordinary contribution to London and to Britain. Closer ties between the UK and India have been a priority for me as a prime minister. I was pleased to join Zac Goldsmith in welcoming Prime Minister Modi to the UK last year at Wembley Stadium.” Then, under the heading The Risk Of A Corbyn-Khan experiment, Cameron described the policies of “Jeremy Corbyn’s candidate Sadiq Khan” as “dangerous”. If Khan won, Cameron said, “Londoners will become lab rats in a giant political experiment”. The message was as brutally simple. Sadiq Khan could not be trusted and Indians should vote for Zac Goldsmith because he had welcomed Shri Modi.
The other great supporter of Zac Goldsmith was his estranged famous cricketer and brother- in-law Imran Khan from Pakistan.
Sadiq Khan is the ultimate victor in May 5, 2016 election of Mayor-ship of London. “My name is Sadiq Khan and I’m the Mayor of London,” he said after a bitterly fought election. It was an opportunity for Labor Party to be cheerful after a long time. The London mayoral election has been a prestigious contest since the directly elected office was created in 2000. During his campaign, Mr. Khan had promised to freeze transport fares and increase the number of homes in the city. Mr. Zac Goldsmith, his Conservative rival, was not so clear on development. His main plank was a ‘racist’ attack on Mr. Khan by accusing him of engaging with Muslim “extremists”. This was an attempt to harness, if not create, Islamophobia.
However, the diverse electorate of London rejected Mr. Goldsmith’s polarizing campaign. The future survey of voting trends would reveal the truth of the efforts of dirty division in the name of terror, religion and leaders.
It was a romantic, idealistic and historic election which saw the rise of the son of a bus driver of Pakistani origin to the mayoral height of a city that had half of the world in its womb. The election result was also a proof that West in still superior in political and religious maturity. They are not as bigoted, color blind and anti-Muslim as often the Mullahs and others want us to believe.
This article is broken in thoughts but there is undercurrent also in this narration and you would get the pulse.
India is beautiful country – a pack of diversity, variety and dogmas and pragmatism.
We have the Modi Mandirs as in RAJKOT, Gujarat there is a temple dedicated to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. It took around two years to build the temple and initially had a photograph of Prime Minister Modi. It rose to prominence after his win in the general elections last year. Ramesh Undhad, who donated funds for temple building, said it took nearly four years to get the Prime Minister’s idol made. “This idol cost us Rs. 1.65 lakh. We tried getting it made from various artists for over three to four years but no one could make an exact.
Only yesterday, the Hindu Sena leaders organized an event in the capital’s Jantar Mantar to show support for Donald Trump who is expected to run for Republican Party as President of USA. The organization also conducted religious ceremonies to pray for his win. “If Donald Trump wins it will be good for America, India and the humanity.” Reason for this love – He is anti Muslim.
Not long ago, according to senior functionaries of the Hindutva group, they had met several groups of saints during the “Magh Kumbh mela” in Allahabad. Nathuram Godse statue might soon be seen within temple premises across the country — to start with, in temples in the Hindi speaking States like Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Bihar. Hundreds of saints during the Magh Kumbh Mela in Allahabad had assured us of their support and now we are planning to install statues in temples with the support of these saints. We have a dedicated set of youths who are brimming with nationalistic fervour and who are ready to put Godse statue at the Raj Ghat at the cost of getting arrested but we don’t want to work like that. We just want to spread the message of ‘Akhand bharat’ (unified India) which was the main mission for Nathuram Godse ji.”
Now coming back to the heading paragraph, Shri Naveen Patnaik, the Chief Minister of the state has handed over the cheque of Rs.5 lakh to Mandodari Nayak, widow of Raghu Nayak, who showed exemplary bravery decades ago in capturing Nathuram Godse, the killer of Mahatma Gandhi.
Concluding remark – Indians do often behave one moment like poles apart and the next like real brothers. We are moody, mercurial, often prejudiced but usually benign, tolerant and secular.
By Naim Naqvi