Bollywood actor Swara Bhasker’s statement on Mahatma Gandhi’s assassination has triggered a furore of mixed esteem. Without naming the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Swara, who is known for her bold statements, said that people who "celebrated the killings of Gandhi are in power today".
In a video shared by news agency ANI, the Bollywood actress said, “Is desh mein Mahatma Gandhi jaise mahaan insaan ki hatya hui, us waqt bhi kuch aise log the jo celebrate kar rahe the unki hatya ko, aaj wo satta mein hain, un sabko daal dena chahiye jail mein?, nahin na. Obvioulsy nahi.” (When the great Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated in India, there were people who celebrated it. Today, they are in power. Should they be sent to jail? No, obviously not).
The actress was referring to the recent arrests of Left-leaning activists by Maharashtra Police over their alleged Maoists links and plot to assassinate Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
On Tuesday, the Pune police had carried out multiple raids at the residences of five Left-leaning activists - revolutionary writer Varavara Rao, Vernon Gonsalves, Arun Ferreira, trade unionist and lawyer Sudha Bhardwaj, and journalist Gautam Navlakha - and arrested them for their alleged Maoists links.
The arrests triggered a massive outrage across the country with some prominent activists approaching the Supreme Court to challenge the police action. The apex court on Wednesday ordered that all the five activists should be kept under house arrest till September 6.
Reacting to arrests, the actress had said, "Indian jails are only for writers, human rights activists and academics.. And doctors who saved the lives of children... #NewIndia (sic)."