A day after the Congress’ student wing, National Students’ Union of India (NSUI), filed a complaint against one Shivam Shukla – alleging that he is a Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) member who replaced Mahatma Gandhi’s image from a Rs 10 currency note with a picture of Godse – the ABVP filed a complained against the former for filing a false complaint.
ABVP national media convener Rahul Chaudhary told The Quint, “This person, Shivam Shukla, was removed from the ABVP in 2017. There were accusations of him misusing the name of the student party for his personal interests, which led to his removal.”
ABVP Madhya Pradesh (Maha Kaushal) state secretary Suman Yadav said that a complaint has been sent to SP City of Sidhi district against the NSUI for “falsely dragging the name of ABVP”. Yadav added that the NSUI was spreading false information about the ABVP. The Quint has a copy of this complaint.
“Not only is this person not in the ABVP for over two years as he used to try and further his person interests, but we also oppose him for what he has done. We do not stand for his actions of replacing Mahatma Gandhi’s face with Godse. He is the father of the nation and our respect for him is unwavering,” she said.
What Is The Controversy?
On the 111th birth anniversary of Godse on 19 May, Shivam Shukla on his Facebook account posted the currency note with Godse’s image along with the well known couplets of Gandhi’s Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram. To add to that, he removed Gandhi’s impression from the backside of the note.
He wrote,“Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram, Desh Bacha Gai Nathuram. Amar Mahatma Pujya shree Nathuram Godse je ke janamdiwas per koti koti naman vandan. Nathuram Godse amar rahe” (Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram. Nathuram saveed the country. Tributes and respects to Nathuram Godse ji on his birthday. Long Live Nathuram Godse.)
NSUI District President Deepak Mishra reported the matter to the Sidhi Kotwali police station, demanding action against Shukla under sedition and forgery charges for tampering with a currency note and promoting Godse. They said Shukla was a general secretary of the ABVP in Sidhi district.
In his complaint, Mishra claimed that Shivam’s post has irked Gandhi’s followers which may led to a conflict between groups during the lockdown.
“Shivam Shukla, an ABVP general secretary of Sidhi district, not only tampered with the Indian currency, issued by the Reserve Bank of India in his post, but has also promoted the ideology of Gandhi’s assassin Godse which has irked people in the district,” Mishra said.
In his complaint, Mishra alleged that Shukla constantly spews venom against Muslims and Congress on social media platforms, but since he has close association with MP Riti Pathak and the RSS, police take no action against him.
“It has been 24 hours since we reported the matter to police for his Facebook post,” claimed Mishra, “but the police is in no mood to register the case and is dillydallying with the matter,” he said.
Police Said Probe is On
When contacted, Superintendent of Police, Sidhi, RS Belwanshi said, “I’m not aware of any such complaint, will take action if anything comes up.”
However, inspector of Kotwali police station, Shesh Mani Patel said, “On the basis of complaint, we are probing the matter that whether the complain has any ground to register the case or not.”
When The Quint approached MP Riti Pathak she condemned Shivam’s Facebook post. “I haven’t seen his post, but, if someone has posted something like this, it can’t be appreciated,” she said.
When asked about her close association with Shivam alleged by Mishra and her Facebook pictures with Shivam, she said, “I don’t know him. Every other party worker has photos with leaders which they post on Facebook. Shivam is one of them.”
(The story was updated on 22 May with claims from the ABVP saying that Shivam Shukla was removed from the ABVP in 2017 after he began to use the name of the party to further his personal interests.)
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