Was, is and will be a ‘deshbhakt’: Pragya Thakur’s praise for Nathuram Godse

Bhopal: BJP’s Pragya Singh Thakur on Thursday stoked yet another controversy by terming Nathuram Godse, the man who assassinated Mahatma Gandhi, as a ‘deshbhakt’ (patriot).

“Nathuram Godse was a ‘deshbhakt’, is a ‘deshbhakt’ and will remain a ‘deshbhakt’,” Pragya said when questioned about actor-turned-politician Kamal Haasan’s remark that India’s first terrorist was a Hindu, referring to Godse.

The BJP candidate from Bhopal Lok Sabha seat claimed that comments like these by Haasan will dent his electoral prospects.

“People calling him a terrorist should instead look within, such people will be given a befitting reply in these elections,” she said.

Haasan, the chief of political outfit Makkal Needhi Maiam, had said, “I am not saying this because many Muslims are here. I am saying this in front of Mahatma Gandhi’s statue. The first terrorist in independent India is a Hindu, his name is Nathuram Godse.”

Pragya Singh Thakur, an accused in the Malegaon blast case, is not new to controversial remarks. After being fielded by the BJP in Lok Sabha polls she had said Hemant Karkare, who was killed in action during the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, died because she had cursed him. Karkare, former chief of Mumbai’s Anti-Terrorism Squad, was probing the Malegaon case. The comments not only earned Pragya criticism from all corners but also got her a notice from the Election Commission forcing her to withdraw her statement.

She was barred from campaigning for three days by the poll body for her comments about Babri Masjid demolition. “I will go to make the Ram Temple. I have said it before and I am not denying it that I had gone there. I have demolished the Babri structure. He is my Ram ji and no one can stop me from making a grand Ram temple. The nation is Ram, Ram is a nation,” the newly-minted politician had said. An FIR was also filed against her for these remarks.

Thakur is contesting against Congress leader Digvijay Singh from Madya Pradesh’s Bhopal.