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Controversial Remarks by Maharashtra LoP Spark Debate During G20 Leaders’ Tribute to Mahatma Gandhi

On a day when the leaders of G20 nations, alongside Prime Minister Narendra Modi, gathered at Rajghat to honor the memory of Mahatma Gandhi by laying wreaths and observing a moment of silence at the revered memorial, Maharashtra’s Leader of Opposition (LoP), Vijay Wadettiwar, sparked controversy with his remarks questioning the legacy of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). He asserted that the BJP lacked leaders with memorials or “samadhis” of their own to pay respects to.

Wadettiwar went on to claim that India’s struggle for independence was chiefly attributed to figures like Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar, who played a pivotal role in drafting the Constitution. He argued that the heroes of the freedom movement were aligned with the Congress ideology. In his words, “When this party (BJP) came to power, it had no historical figures of its own to commemorate.”

He continued to emphasize that the historical legacy of India was intertwined with the Congress, the contributions of Mahatma Gandhi, Babasaheb Ambedkar, and Jawaharlal Nehru. He highlighted the transformative impact of Mahatma Gandhi, stating, “He not only made India self-reliant from scratch but also set the course of India’s history in motion.”

Vijay Wadettiwar’s comments came shortly after the G20 leaders, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, received a warm welcome at Rajghat. During the ceremony, attended by world leaders such as US President Joe Biden, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, among others, a moment of silence was observed, and floral tributes were paid at Delhi’s Rajghat to commemorate the enduring legacy of Mahatma Gandhi.


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