New Delhi, May 18: Seeking to give a new twist to history, Hindu outfit Akhil Bharatiya Janasangh today termed the first war of independence in 1857 as a "mutiny and Hindu blunder" and asked the government not to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the event next year.
Sharply reacting to the government's plans to set up a broad-based national committee to commemorate the event, Jana Sangh general secretary and former BJP Rajya Sabha member Prafull Goradia asserted in a statement here that the 1857 rebellion was not the first war of independence.
"We reject the proposal to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the 1857 mutiny. It certainly was not the first war of independence. It was the first opportunity for Hindus to demolish Muslim dominance.
"1857 began as a sepoy mutiny which was exploited by vested interests, mainly muslim, who had been hurt by the British entry into India. What is the sense in commemorating a past Hindu blunder," asked Goradia, who had resigned from the bjp blaming the abandoning of Hindutva by the party for its 2004 Lok Sabha debacle.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had recently stated that the government was setting up a broad-based national committee to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the first war of independence which would include among others Leader of Opposition L K Advani.
In a letter to Singh, Advani had suggested among other things commemoration of the 1857 anniversary as a tri-nation event involving India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.