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Right wing leader Manohar Bhide claimed that Mahatma Gandhi was raised by a Muslim father and there was proof available. (Image: News18/File)

Right wing leader Manohar Bhide claimed that Mahatma Gandhi was raised by a Muslim father and there was proof available. (Image: News18/File)

Right wing leader Manohar Bhide, better known as Sambhaji Bhide, at a function in Amravati claimed that Mahatma Gandhi’s father was not Karamchand Gandhi but a Muslim landlord

Manohar Bhide, better known as ‘Sambhaji’ Bhide or ‘Bhide Guruji’ among right-wing groups, has made a controversial statement about Mahatma Gandhi. Addressing a function at Maharashtra’s Amravati on Thursday, he said: “Mahatma Gandhi’s father is not Karamchand Gandhi, his real father was a Muslim landlord.”

Bhide is the founder of a right-wing outfit, Shiv Pratishthan Hindustan, and has made several such controversial statements in the past. He was also at the centre of a controversy during the 2018 Bhima Koregaon violence near Pune.

“We have been told that Karamchand Gandhi was the father of Mahatma Gandhi, but his real father was a Muslim landlord who had employed Karamchand Gandhi. Karamchand had stolen a big amount from that Muslim landlord, hence he had brought Karamchand’s wife to his house and kept her as one of his wives; that is why Mohandas’s real father is not Karamchand Gandhi but that Muslim landlord,” Bhide said.

Bhide further claimed that Gandhi was raised by a Muslim father and there was proof available. The repercussions of Bhide’s controversial statement were seen in the state assembly, where the monsoon session is underway.

Congress leader Balasaheb Thorat questioned the Eknath Shinde-led government over Bhide’s statement. “The government should answer on who is shielding Bhide when he is making such controversial statements on a regular basis. By making such statements, his aim is to disturb the harmony in the state. For whose political benefit is he making such statements? We demand strong action against him. The state government should also make a statement on the floor of the House about the action taken against him.”

He added: “These big leaders (like Mahatma Gandhi) are the idols of many; they have contributed a lot to building society but some people want to entirely finish off progressive thought propagated by great leaders and we will not tolerate this. If the government does not take action against Bhide, it will be clear that it is not serious about this issue.”

Bhide has often rejected and protested the idea of secularism propagated by the Constitution. This time, while speaking at the same function, Bhide said leaders who supported or professed the idea of secularism should be barred from politics.

“Hindustan is the only country that has a large Hindu population brave enough, but has forgotten their responsibilities towards their religion. After the division of Hindustan, weak leaders led India,” Bhide said.

Clyde Crasto, NCP spokesperson, also took a dig at the Shinde-led government over the controversial statement. “Bhide has lost his mental balance; there is a need to admit him to a hospital. How did he not feel ashamed while making such a statement about Mahatma Gandhi?” he asked.

Another Congress leader Sachin Sawant tweeted against Bhide’s statement: “Strictest action should be taken against Manohar Bhide, who has made a statement against Mahatma Gandhi. Earlier, he had insulted the Indian Flag, made controversial statements about Independence Day and now he has insulted the Father of the Nation, which is an anti-national act. The government is shielding him only because the PM (Narendra Modi) called him his ‘guru’.”

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