​Mahatma’s sons opposed death penalty for Godse, Apte. I belong to that school of thought: Gopal Gandhi

Tunia Cherian | | Updated on: Jul 18, 2017
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Thanking 18 Opposition parties for backing his candidature as Vice-President, former West Bengal Governor Gop​a​l Krishna Gandhi, on Tuesday said he was an ‘ordinary citizen’ who aspired to narrow the growing gulf between people and politics in India today.

“I am not here to oppose any individual, much less the senior gentleman nominated by the NDA (M. Venkaiah Naidu). I am not here to oppose any political party or formation. I am here to place before all honourable MPs, the aspirations of the common citizens of India. ​There ​is absence of a sense ​among citizens ​that this politics is mine. I am not talking about government, but politics. People’s faith in politics itself has diminished, almost collapsed, and this I want to tell all political parties, including those who have supported me.. I would like to see a revival of ​that ​faith,” Gandhi told presspersons after filing his nomination.

Asked about the Shiv Sena’s allegation that he “supported terrorism”, as he sought mercy for Bombay blast accused Yakub Memon, Gandhi said he was principally opposed to capital punishment and death penalty.

“Mahatma Gandhi opposed death penalty. He fell to assassin​s'​ bullets, but his two sons appealed to the government of the day, saying that Nathuram Godse should not be hanged, Naray​a​n Apte should not be hanged, because Gandhiji was opposed to death sentence..I belong to that school of thought,” he said, adding that he was inspired by Mahatma Gandhi and B.R. Ambedkar, both of whom opposed death penalty.

“Death penalty is a death penalty, I have also written to Pakistan President for Kulbhushanji (Jadhav),” he said, adding that he believes that “death penalty and capital punishment belong to the medieval ages.”

Gandhi​ welcomed support from the Biju Janata Dal ​ supremo Naveen Patnaik ​on Tuesday, ​but added that even if he won this​ election it wouldn’t be a great feat. “Winning positions or losing is not importan​​t today. What is more important is being true to your words, thoughts and your heart,” he added.​

Published on January 11, 2018

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