Why Was Mahatma Gandhi Killed? - By Harish Khare - IAMC
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Why Was Mahatma Gandhi Killed? – By Harish Khare

As is their wont, our new rulers can be relied upon to convert Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th anniversary into an event on a staggering scale; but it is important not to be taken in by this grand lip-service. Rather, it is imperative for every Indian to remember that the greatest Indian of the 20th century was killed in cold blood when he was on his way to his customary evening prayers, and that this saint’s murder was not the handiwork of an isolated mad man but part of a collective enterprise of cold-hearted, brutal and evil men.

Above all, it is necessary to ask the question: what kind of ideology of hate had driven the masterminds behind the assassination? It is important this January 30 for us to try to find an answer to this question, because the ideological heirs of those who had planned Gandhi’s murder have managed to capture the commanding heights of Indian politics.

Of course, the immediate provocation for killing the Mahatma was his principled unwillingness to give in to a hatred of Muslims in the wake of the post-Partition turmoil. His refusal to concede to “the Hindus” a right to “settle score” with “the Muslims” was deeply resented by the proponents of Hindu assertiveness. And these proponents found it infuriatingly unacceptable that the Mahatma should invoke his moral authority to want to call a halt to the butchery at work right in the capital of independent India.…