Carrying further the “Bapu: Father Of the Nation” adage, Amruta Fadnavis, wife of Maharashtra deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis, on Wednesday courted controversy by reiterating PM Narendra Modi is “Rashtra Pita” of modern India.
Maintaining that the India has “two fathers of nation,” Amruta, a banker and singer, said during a mock court interview (Abhirup Nyayalay) in Nagpur: “It is my firm view that we have two Rashtra Pita. Narendra Modi is the father of new India and Mahatma Gandhi is the father of the nation of earlier times.”
A year ago, too, Amruta had called Modi the father of modern India. It was in this context the interviewer sought to know that if Modi is the Rashtra Pita, then who is Mahatma Gandhi.
The remark invited criticism from Opposition parties. Congress leader and former minister Yashomati Thakur held: “People who subscribe to BJP and RSS are repeatedly trying to undermine and malign Mahatma Gandhi. The agenda of BJP and RSS is to change History. They are master at spreading lies and creating their own narrative to mislead the people. It is a well thought out attempt towards changing history.”
A senior NCP leader, requesting anonymity, said, “How should we react? It is shocking. Can anybody be compared to Mahatma Gandhi? This is so trivial.”
The BJP, however, has distanced itself from making any comment on the issue. “It is her personal opinion and since she is not a BJP member, we have little to say,” shared a Nagpur-based leader on conditions of anonymity.