JAMMU, Jan 16: Describing the replacement of Mahatma Gandhi by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the calendar and diary issued by Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC), Government of India, as an act of national sacrilege, Harsh Dev Singh, JKNPP Chairman and Former Minister remarked that none could become a “Mahatma” merely by getting himself photographed with a “Charkha”.
He said that the picture of Mahatma Gandhi with “Charkha” stood for a set a values and symbolized austerity, sacrifice and simplicity. He said that the move had only evoked cynicism besides rendering the PM as an object of contemptuous humorous disparagement.
Terming the act of KVIC as absurd and ludicrous, he appealed to not replace the iconic image of the “Father of the Nation”, who had secured a highly respectfully and permanent place in the collective conscience of the country and the world at large.
Condemning the Central Government for promoting the culture of sycophancy and personality cult, Singh said that its latest move had invited country wide ridicule and derision. He said that the silence maintained by the PM on the subject was also intriguing given his penchant for publicity, pomposity and ostentation, luxury suits and expensive clothes, media attention, and for grandeur and power.
Maintaining that Mahatma Gandhi was an epitome of humility and self less sacrifice, Singh said that none had the puissance to come anywhere near to his sublime persona. Any attempt to bring the self promoting and self aggrandizing politicians in comparison to Gandhi would not only invite ridicule and contempt but could spark massive outrage, warned Singh.