[Youth Congress activists stage protest against removal of Mahatma Gandhi's photos from the Khadi Gramodhyog Board products, in Bhopal. (PTI Photo)]
New Delhi: Mahatma Gandhi's great grandson Tushar Gandhi on Friday expressed outrage over Prime Minister Narendra Modis picture on the Khadi Village Industries Commission (KVIC) calendar and diaries and called for disbanding the commission.
IANS on Thursday reported about Modi's picture spinning the charkha donning the cover page of the KVIC calendar and diary, instead of the iconic picture of Gandhi weaving khadi on a simple charkha, wearing his trademark loin cloth.
Reacting to the development, Tushar Gandhi questioned the sincerity of the KVIC and also took a dig at Modi.
"Anybody can become an icon of anything but in order to be appreciated it has to be sincere. It has to be ideological and not just a mere photo prop," Tushar Gandhi told IANS.
"No matter how much they pretend, they do not believe in Gandhian ideology. So there is no question of sincerity. This is just a desperate attempt to snatch Mahatma's legacy," he said.
He blamed the KVIC for turning khadi, a symbol of empowerment, into a "helpless fabric".
"It's time Bapu bids adieu to KVIC. The commission over the years has well played its role in turning Bapu's khadi into a helpless fabric.
"The khadi, which now they are trying to endorse through Modi, is no more Bapu's khadi," he said adding that the KVIC should be disbanded.
Earlier in the day he took to twitter to take pot shots at Modi.
"First Bapu disappeared from new Rs 2,000 notes, now he disappears from KVIC office and calendar. Replaced by 10 Lakh Ka suit loving PM," posted Tushar Gandhi.
"Replacing Bapu's photo from KVIC Calendar and diary with million Rs suit loving PM's is a tongue in cheek taunt by ministry," he said referring to Modi's pinstriped suit, with his name monogrammed on it, that had fetched several million rupees in auction.
While the opposition has collectively slammed the KVIC move to 'replace' Mahatma Gandhi's photo, the BJP-led Centre as well as KVIC chairman Vinay Kumar Saxena have tried to downplay the incident.