829Mahatma Gandhi, the leader who helped lead India to independence over British rule, was actually an agent for the colonists, a top India judge has claimed.

Justice Markandey Ketju said Gandhi deliberately tried to drive a wedge between the country’s Hindu and Muslim populations, helping the British to divide and rule.

The judge, who is known for making controversial statements, made his comments ahead of the unveiling of a statue of Gandhi in Parliament Square, London.

They also came as Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond flies to Delhi for his first official visit, meeting with finance minister Arun Jaitley, who will come to London to see the statue unveiled.

Mr Katju, 68, wrote on his personal blog: ‘I submit that Gandhi was objectively a British agent who did great harm to India.

‘By constantly injecting religion into politics continuously for several decades, Gandhi furthered the British policy of divide and rule.’

In a separate post on the same topic, he asks: ‘Does such a man, who constantly injected religion into politics, and thereby furthered the British policy of divide and rule, deserve to be called the Father of the Nation?

He then goes on to quote from Gandhi’s speeches and writings before adding: ‘These are only some of the stupid, feudal ideas this “Father of our nation” had.’