Path Breaking Film
One of my friends gave me a nice old film about the assassination of the Indian Leader Mahatma Gandhi. He was assassinated on 30 January 1948 by a Hindu fanatic named Nathuram Godse. The film is based on a book by Stanley Wolpert and depicts a fictional account of the previous 9 hours in the life of Nathuram Godse, before he shot Gandhi. It is a 1963 film and was then banned by the Indian government. The film brings out the hatred of Godse for Muslims and his varied sex life with two women, one married and the other a prostitute. Horst Buchholz plays the role of Nathuram Godse and Gandhi is played by Indian star and writer JS Cashyap. The film depicts the how Godse planned the assassination of Gandhi.
The film was released 1963 and Nehru who saw it banned the movie. It was never shown in India though it won critical acclaim abroad. The film was sympathetic to Godse and that was something not liked by Nehru. Perhaps in case the film had been released in the 21st century it would have had a safe passage to the cinema halls in India.
Times have changed and many people in India consider Godse a hero. In fact he was a Hindu Maha Sabha member and at one time was a Gandhi follower. But he got disillusioned with Gandhi and his brand of politics that centered on a policy of appeasement of the Muslims. The fact is despite all that Gandhi tried, he was never accepted by Muslims as their leader.
Godse and Gandhi
Gandhi probably had it coming with over 2 million Hindus killed and hundreds of Hindu women raped and forcibly married into harems, the cups were full and in the surcharged atmosphere of 1947-48, this act of Godse was in a way a logical step. I am no supporter of Godse, but the fact is he articulated the feelings of millions of Hindus and Sikhs. I agree the Sikhs also retaliated against the Muslims , but it was a reflex action and came only after the butchery had been started by the Muslims on the call for “direct action” by Jinnah.
The film is a faithful depiction of that period and Horst Buchloz has done a very good role as portrayer of Godse. I wonder if the modern youngster’s know or heard about Horst Buchloz? Many questions have now risen about Gandhi, which were camouflaged by Nehru and the Congress party. In addition many people in India want to honor Godse with statues and remembering his birthday and day he was hanged to death in 1948.
The film is worth an look and one can down load it from the net or get a copy from the video library. In my view it is a timeless film and such films will always interest people who are India lovers as well as want to know the truth.