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Pragya’s Godse remarks under EC lens

By PTI Updated: May 16, 2019 11:54 pm

New Delhi, May 16 (PTI): The Election Commission  onThursday took cognisance of BJP’s Bhopal candidate and Malegaon blast accused Pragya Singh Thakur’s remarks describing Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin Nathuram Godse a “patriot”.

The poll body has sought a “factual report” from chief electoral officer of Madhya Pradesh by Friday on her statement, official sources said here.

Thakur later apologised for it and withdrew the statement.

Talking to a news channel in Agar Malwa in Madhya Pradesh on Thursday afternoon, Thakur said, “Nathuram Godse was a ‘deshbhakt’ (patriot), he is and will remain a ‘deshbhakt’. Those calling him a terrorist should instead look at themselves. They will be given a befitting reply in this election.”

She said this in response to a question over actor-turned politician Kamal Haasan’s remark that “free India’s first extremist was a Hindu”, a reference to Godse.

Earlier this month, the EC had barred Thakur from campaigning for three days for violating the Model Code of Conduct by stirring up communal feelings.

The poll watchdog had said in its order that the decision came in light of her comments against slain IPS officer Hemant Karkare and on the demolition of the Babri Masjid.

Congress wants Modi’s apology over Pragya’s remarks on Godse

The Congress on Thursday condemned remarks of BJPs Lok Sabha candidate from Bhopal Pragya Singh Thakur describing Mahatma Gandhis assassin Nathu Ram Godse as a patriot and sought an apology from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Talking to reporters, Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala alleged that the ruling BJP dispensation “was successor” of Godse and India’s soul is again under attack by them.

He said Thakur had earlier made disparaging remarks against Maharashtra ATS officer Hemant Karkare, who had interrogated her in the Malegaon case and was later killed during the 26/11 Mumbai attacks.

“BJP and its leaders are deliberately, and in a concerted conspiracy, attacking the thought, the entire way of life as also the teaching of Mahatma Gandhi. This is an insult to the Indian way of life, the Gandhian way of life that lies in India’s soul. This is an unpardonable sin,” he said.

Surjewala also referred to remarks of BJP MP Sakshi Maharaj describing Godse as a patriot for which he had expressed regret.

“We call upon the Prime Minister to tender an unconditional apology to the nation and take punitive action against Pragya Thakur otherwise it will be more than proved that all such acts of denigrating the Father of the Nation by the ilk of Pragya Thakur have active concurrence of Modi,” he said.

He said Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah must punish Pragya Thakur and withdraw her candidature.

By PTI Updated: May 16, 2019 11:54:03 pm