Row forces Ravindra Bhavan to cancel 'Godse' show on Gandhi Jayanti

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 01 October 2013 14:04 IST

A fresh controversy sparked on the eve of Gandhi Jayanti today as Ravindra Bhavan of Margao, the state government institution, announcing a show tomorrow of controversial play ‘Mee Nathuram Godse Boltoy’.

Following protests and condemnations through social media, Ravindra Bhavan cancelled tomorrow’s show.

The play justifies the murder of Mahatma Gandhi by Nathuram Godse, a Hindu fanatic who was previously closely associated with Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh.

Garphapona Creations, a local group from Bicholim was to stage the play, written by Pradeep Dalvi, in association with Ravindra Bhavan, with free entry.

Damu Naik, chairman of Ravindra Bhavan, when contacted told that he has already decided to cancel tomorrow’s show, following reservations expressed by many people.

Naik claims that the play was not an initiative by Ravindra Bhavan but they had provided the infrastructure free of cost to the performers.

“They found the theatre vacant on 2 October and we agreed to it”, said Naik.

He admitted that it was an error to give a date for this play on Gandhi Jayanti Day.

“The play is not banned and the performers have a right to perform it. But I stopped it in order to avoid any kind of tension, considering the day on which it was performed”, said Naik.

However, reliable sources in Ravindra Bhavan disclosed to that the show was organised by Ravindra Bhavan and not by the Bicholim-based performing group.

It is also understood that the show of 'Mee Nathuram...' was organised on 2 October in spite of knowing that it is Gandhi Jayanti Day. 

The banners put up all over the town stated very clearly that the drama is presented jointly by Ravindra Bhavan and Lokmanya Co-operaative Bank Ltd. The name of Bicholim group figured there only as producers. 

Gurunath Kelekar, a staunch Gandhian and freedom fighter, strongly criticized staging of the play on Gandhi Jayanti Day.

He said he expected a minimum level of decency and cultured behavior from the government authorities and those who head Ravindra Bhavan.

“Nobody can stop them from staging the play. But propriety demanded that such a play should not be staged at least on the auspicious day of Gandhi Jayanti”, he said.

Kelekar received national level Sahitya Academy Award this year for his Konkani translation of Gandhi’s book “The Experiments of Truth.”

He even volunteered to participate in a non-violent demonstration to stop the staging of ‘Mee Nathuram…’ on Gandhi Jayanti Day.

The play was to be staged in association with Ravindra Bhavan and Lokmanya Co-operative Bank Ltd, headed by Kiran Thakur, editor of Belgaum-based Marathi daily Tarun Bharat.

According to Naik, all the year-long activities of Ravindra Bhavan would be carried out in association with the Lokmanya Co-operative Bank Ltd as per the agreement since the Bank has donated Rs one crore to Ravindra Bhavan of Margao.

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Lokmanya Cooperative Bank Ltd has donated one crore rupees to Ravindra Bhavan does not mean this type of play should be staged on Gandhi Jayanthi Day.

Shame on the people who wanted to do this!

- Francisco, Goa | 01 st October 2013 19:59


u do realize that the photos are of the actor who played godse in Gandhi and the same actor touching ben kingsley as gandhi's feet????

- Rajan, Mumbai | 01 st October 2013 15:44


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