No Reason for Takeover: Gandhi’s Grandson Files PIL Against Ashram Redevelopment

The PIL states that the proposed project is "diametrically opposed to the personal wishes and bequeathal of Gandhi".

2 min read

Mahatama Gandhi's great-grandson Tushar Gandhi – a writer and social worker – has reportedly filed a public interest litigation (PIL) at the Gujarat High Court opposing the proposal for the Gandhi Ashram redevelopment.

According to The Leaflet, the PIL states that the proposed project is "diametrically opposed to the personal wishes and bequeathal of Mahatama Gandhi".

Further, as per the PIL, the said redevelopment would diminish the shrine and freedom movement memorial to a commercial tourist attraction.

Senior advocate Mihir Desai is slated to argue the petition, which has been filed through Advocate Bhushan Oza.

The Leaflet has quoted Tushar Gandhi as pointing out that none of Gandhi's ashrams were ever under government control, and stating that it is how it should be.

"They have been kept in a good condition by the managing trusts for over 70 years, so there is no reason why anybody should desire that the government should take over.”
Tushar Gandhi

He also shed light on the fact during the foundation of the Gandhi Smarak Nidhi, "it was clearly stated by the founders that the government would not be allowed any role in it".

"The initial corpus was collected by industrialists and other private persons, and the government was kept out. Later on, by way of an amendment, it was made permissible to accept government grants and funding for various projects, but even then, the government has never had any control in the management or other functions.”
Tushar Gandhi

Meanwhile Senior Advocate Mihir Desai told The Leaflet that Gandhi never even wanted the Ashram to be a tourist attraction.

As pointed out by The Quint in this report, the project that aims to convert the ashram into a 'world class memorial' is one of the many pet projects of the central government and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in collaboration with architect Bimal Patel.

(With inputs from The Leaflet.)

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Topics:  Mahatama Gandhi 

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