'Excluding Nehru from ICHR poster shows narrow mindset'

Exclusion of Nehru's image from ICHR poster shows Centre's narrow mindset: Gehlot

ICHR has been facing flak from opposition parties for excluding Nehru's picture from a poster released to celebrate the 75th year of independence

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot. Credit: PTI Photo

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Monday said the exclusion of former prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru's picture from a poster released by the Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR) to commemorate the 75th year of India's independence reflects the narrow mindset of the Centre.

In a statement, the chief minister also said the BJP-led central government will have to bear the brunt of trying to undermine Nehru's contribution to the freedom struggle and the people of the country will teach it a lesson at an appropriate time.

The ICHR, an autonomous body under the Ministry of Education, has been running a series of lectures and seminars on the theme of independence struggle under the 'Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav' celebration.

It has been facing flak from opposition parties for excluding Nehru's picture from a poster released to celebrate the 75th year of independence.

However, the ICHR has said the controversy is "unnecessary" as other posters that will be released in the coming days will feature the first prime minister.

"Not having the picture of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru in the poster of 'Amrit Mahotsav' issued by the ICHR is not only condemnable but also shows the narrow mindset of the central government," Gehlot said.

Also read: Other posters will have Nehru's image, unnecessary controversy over issue: ICHR official

He said the BJP government will have to bear the brunt of trying to undermine Nehru's contribution to the freedom struggle. The former PM devoted himself to the fight for freedom and laid the foundation of modern India.

People will teach a lesson to the Modi government at an appropriate time, he added.

Gehlot said Nehru went to prison nine times during the freedom struggle and spent 3,259 days of his life in jail. He boldly faced the action taken by the British when he opposed them.

"Vinayak Damodar Savarkar started apologising to the British after only a year of being jailed and apologised six times. After being released from jail, he worked as a British informer, while Pandit Nehru stood like a rock in front of the British," he said.

When three prominent commanders of the Azad Hind Fauj were prosecuted by the British, Nehru campaigned in their support throughout the country and formed the INA Defence Committee. He along with other lawyers fought the case and saved the soldiers from the noose, the chief minister said. 

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