After Sadhvi Pragya’s Godse remark created a major furore in the political diaspora, the Bhopal MP on Friday apologised in the Parliament saying her statement was distorted by the Opposition. Sadhvi Pragya said she acknowledges and respects the contributions of Mahatma Gandhi to the Nation and holds him in high esteem, but condemns the way she was misquoted and victimised. After apologising in the lower house the BJP leader launched a scathing attack on Congress supremo Rahul Gandhi for calling her a ‘terrorist’.
Without naming Rahul Gandhi, Sadhvi Pragya slammed the Opposition for attempting to sketch her as a Hindu terrorist. She said that though the previous government had devised a plot against her and made all possible attempts to characterise her as a terrorist, she has not been proven guilty in court, and there is no credible evidence against her.
It is widely believed that Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur was one of the victims of the Congress party’s attempt to invent Hindu Terror. When in power, the Congress had propagated a false ‘Hindu Terror’ narrative with the help of Digvijay Singh and others, by accusing Sadhvi Pragya and Lt Col Shrikant Purohit in the Malegaon blasts. Sadhvi Pragya was, however, granted bail in April 2017 after the court found no credible evidence against her.
Pragya Thakur said in the Parliament that calling her a terrorist without any substantial evidence is not only against the law but also unethical. She said that this comment is an attack on a woman’s self-respect. The opposition has deliberately vilified a woman, an MP, a Sadhvi’ integrity which she said is highly condemnable, she added.
#Breaking | I apologise if my words hurt anyone. I have been misquoted and victimised. It’s derogatory to call me a terrorist, says @SadhviPragya_MP in #LokSabha over her ‘#deshbhakt‘ remark on #NathuramGodse. #PragyaSinghThakur #PragyaThakur #MahatmaGandhi pic.twitter.com/uaw3PQbQnB
— ET NOW (@ETNOWlive) November 29, 2019
The previous day, Congress ex-president Rahul Gandhi had called BJP MP Sadhvi Pragya Thakur a ‘terrorist’ after she had allegedly praised Nathuram Godse by calling him a patriot. “What she is saying that is the heart of the RSS and BJP, what can I say? It cannot be hidden. I don’t need to waste my time demanding action against that woman.”
In a tweet later, Rahul Gandhi wrote, “Terrorist Pragya calls terrorist Godse, a patriot. A sad day, in the history of India’s Parliament.”
Moreover, after Rahul Gandhi statement, Congress went a step ahead issuing a threatening statement against Pragya Thakur saying that she will be burnt alive if she ever sets her foot in Madhya Pradesh. “We will not just burn her effigy…if she sets foot here, we will burn her also,” said Biaora’s Congress MLA Govardhan Dangi.
Thakur had earlier also clarified that she was referring to Udham Singh when she made the statement.
Following the outrage, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday had clarified that the BJP condemned any philosophy which describes Nathuram Godse as a ‘patriot’.
Speaking in the Lok Sabha, Union Defence Minister and senior BJP leader Rajnath Singh also said that the philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi was, is and will remain relevant and described him as a guide (margdarshak) for the nation.
After the controversy, Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur has also been removed from a key parliamentary panel and has been barred from attending the parliamentary party meetings of the party.