- Pooja Shakun Pandey posted pictures on Facebook with senior BJP leaders
- The police filed cases against 13 people including Pooja Shakun Pandey
- Hindu Mahasabha leader "recreated" the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi
Hindu Mahasabha leader Pooja Shakun Pandey, who shockingly enacted the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi at Uttar Pradesh's Aligarh on Wednesday by shooting at his effigy, is seen with two senior BJP leaders - former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and union minister Uma Bharti - in pictures she has posted on Facebook. The photos shared on March 19, 2017, seem to have been removed now.
On a day when the country marked the 71st death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, there was outrage on social media over the video of Pooja Shakun Pandey, wearing saffron, shooting an effigy of Gandhi with an air pistol and garlanding his assassin Nathuram Godse. The Hindu Mahasabha leader also told reporters that her organisation had started a new tradition by "recreating" the assassination, and it would be an annual event "just like the burning of Raavan on Dussehra".
At the appalling event for which the police have now filed criminal cases, Nathuram Godse, who was a Hindu Mahasabha member, was also hailed as a hero for what the group called a watershed moment in Indian history.
The police have registered cases against 13 people, including Pooja Shakun Pandey. Two people have now been arrested and the rest are absconding.
"Today on the occasion of the 71st death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, workers of Hindu Mahasabha fired at the effigy of Mahatma Gandhi. The incident took place in a house in Naurangabad locality of the city. Later, the video of the event went viral on social media," said senior police officer Akash Kulhary. The police are conducting raids to catch the accused persons, say sources.
Amid criticism over his photos with the Hindu Mahasabha leader, Shivraj Singh Chauhan tweeted: "Erasing illiteracy, poverty and violence towards making a new and strong India would be the true tribute to the Father of the Nation on his death anniversary."