Pragya Singh Thakur
BJP candidate Pragya Singh Thakur gestures while addressing a party workers' meeting for Lok Sabha polls, in Bhopal | PTI
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New Delhi: It wasn’t just opposition leaders or critics who spoke up against Pragya Singh Thakur’s Nathuram Godse remark, condemnation also came from the unlikeliest of quarters.

On Friday, leading industrialist Anand Mahindra and economist Rathin Roy joined opposition leaders in criticising Thakur’s remark calling the killer of Mahatma Gandhi a “patriot”.

In what was a rare political comment by an Indian industrialist, Mahindra called India “the land of the Mahatma”, and went on to question if “we” were to become the “Taliban”, destroying “statues that sustain us”.

Thakur is the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s candidate from the Bhopal constituency in Madhya Pradesh and an accused in the 2008 Malegaon blasts case. She has been in the middle of a series of controversies ever since her candidature was announced a month ago.

She had earlier made derogatory comments against Hemant Karkare, the former chief of the Maharashtra anti-terror squad who died in the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks.

Rathin Roy, a member of the Prime Minister’s Economic Advisory council, also questioned Thakur’s candidature Thursday, but clarified that he was making the comments as a citizen of India.

In his comments made on social networking platform Twitter, Roy blamed the politicians for their “complicity”.

ThePrint reached Roy, who also heads the National Institute of Public Finance and Policy, for further comment but he declined.

Also readSadhvi Pragya’s Karkare rant ‘embarrasses’ BJP, which sees her as a ‘double-edged sword’

BJP action

Looking to distance itself from Thakur’s comments, the BJP said they do not reflect the party’s view.

On Friday, the party’s top leadership, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, censured Thakur for her remarks. In an interview to media outlet News24, Modi said “he’ll never be able to forgive Thakur” for her comments.

Earlier in the day, BJP president Amit Shah said the comments by Thakur — and two other party leaders — have been sent to the BJP’s disciplinary committee for review.

The action against Thakur came hours after she reportedly “apologised” for her comments, saying her statements have been “twisted by the media”.

‘Truth about RSS-BJP’

Opposition parties, however, have been quick to latch on to Thakur’s statements to question the BJP.

Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, general secretary of the Congress, said on Twitter, “बापू का हत्यारा देशभक्त? हे राम! Distancing yourself from your candidate is not enough. Nationalistic luminaries of the BJP, have the guts to spell out your stand.”

Communist Party of India (Marxist) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said, “The truth about where RSS-BJP stands on terror gets clearer all the time. A senior Minister in Modi’s cabinet said Godse was not a terrorist, now terror-accused Pragya Thakur calls the murderer of Gandhi ji a ‘deshbhakt’. The BJP remains inspired by the killers of the Mahatma.

Yechury added that this was the reason why “Sardar Patel banned RSS after Gandhi’s assassination. An organisation which supports a terror accused even today. This is its reality.”

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4 Comments Share Your Views


  1. Completely wrong. Gandhi was not fit for present time. Gandhi’s acts of keeping mum when lacs of Hindus were butchered in Kolkata by muslims whereas he sat on fast when Hindus retaliated is unpardonable. Due to Gandhi’s support, Subhash Chandra Bose was removed from Congress’s Presidentship in 1939 & Patel was bypassed in favour of Nehru for Indian Prime-ministership even when 20 out of 22 states had favoured Patel. Due to that unpardonable behaviour, we are facing Kashmir problem & Nehru’s philosophy of pseudo-secularism has brought us into a situation wherein-in a Hindu father is killed by eve-teaser Muslim’s father & brother in Motinagar, Delhi’s centre & this news is suppressed. Biased media has suppressed the news whereas a cow smuggler Akhlaq’s murder was made headline for months together and innocent Hindus were intentionally jailed just to pamper Muslims.
    Godse was a real patriot. He has been painted wrongly by biased pseudo-secular media and pseudo secular people.
    Gandhi & Nehru are fully responsible for more than 50 % of India’s problems of poverty, illiteracy, corruption, rape, Islamisation & growth of 500 plus mini-Pakistans in India.
    Committing crime is sin but tolerating the same is a bigger sin. Gandhi made Hindus tolerate all sins of muslims & protested every bit of it when Hindus did even a minor retaliation.
    May be Gandhi, if born in 3000 AD, would have been welcome because by that time Muslims may become civilised and may not kill / attack / rape / eve-tease non-muslims and Quran’s Aayats would remove those aayats which teach killing of non-believers means kafirs means non-muslims.
    Illiterates in real sense without profound knowledge of History, religion and without the foresight of future criticizes Godse and worships Gandhi.

  2. Apparently the BJP is just testing the waters to see if the time is right to start changing the narrative of Gandhi as the Father of the Nation. People who have been brought up on the ideology of Akhand Bharat would obviously like to see the likes of Savarkar, Apte and Godse replace Nehru, Gandhi, Maulana Azad.

    • If Gandhi – a much revered leader in the West – is given second class status for ideological reasons, Modi will lose credibility. This Pragya woman should be disqualified and charged with sedition.


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