Arrested for shooting at the effigy of Mahatma Gandhi on his 71st death anniversary, a right wing leader today said she had no regrets for her actions and was merely exercising her constitutional rights. Pooja Shakun Pandey, Hindu Mahasabha leader, was arrested on Tuesday after a video of her recreating the assassination surfaced.
"We have not murdered anyone, we have used our constitution rights. I don't have any guilt. We don't have any complaint against the government, they are forced to do what they are doing," Pooja Shakun Pandey said, according to news agency ANI.
On January 30, the death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, the Hindu Mahasabha held a function at Aligarh during which his assassin Nathuram Godse's statue was garlanded and sweets were distributed. The enactment of the assassination was also held and reporters were told that it would henceforth be held every year like the burning of the demon king Ravana's effigy during Dusshera.
The Uttar Pradesh police registered criminal cases against 12 people in connection with the shocking enactment. Three persons seen in the video were arrested last week.
Pooja Shakun Pandey's husband Ashok Pandey, who has also been taken into custody, today told ANI, "We are doing our job, the police are doing their job. This is the unfortunate plight of independent India. People who are disrespecting the country are roaming free, while people like us are being arrested."
The Hindu Mahasabha calls the day of Mahatma Gandhi's death as "Shaurya Divas" (Bravery Day), in honour of Nathuram Godse. The right-wing activist was one of the early members of the organisation, founded by Madan Mohan Malaviya in 1915.
With inputs from ANI