Fadnavis slams Rahul on Savarkar remark; asks whether Uddhav Thackeray backs it

Mumbai: Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday slammed Congress leader Rahul Gandhi for his remarks on freedom fighter V D Savarkar and asked whether Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray supports such a statement.

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Talking to reporters, Fadnavis said Rahul Gandhi didn’t know the history of India and the Congress.

In a media interaction on Saturday, Rahul Gandhi said Savarkar used to get a stipend from the British and these are historical facts.

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“Rahul Gandhi has again insulted Swatyantraveer Savarkar he has been constantly saying that he was an agent and took the money. I condemn his statement,” Fadnavis said.

He said the Congress has often insulted Savarkar because he had the backing of a large number of people.

“After Independence, Congress has purposely insulted Savarkar several times,” the BJP leader alleged.

Latching on to Rahul’s remarks, Fadnavis asked whether Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray would condemn his statement.

The Congress and the Shiv Sena are partners in the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA).

“Is he (Thackeray) going to send his leaders to welcome him (Rahul Gandhi) during ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ and is he going to back his statement? Uddhav ji must answer this,” Fadnavis said.

Savarkar, a Hindutva ideologue, is a revered figure for many right-wing organisations. He is also an important political icon for the BJP.

The Shiv Sena, which champions itself as a Hindutva party, had demanded Bharat Ratna for Savarkar.

“Savarkar served the kalapani sentence for 11 years at the Cellular jail in Andaman. There are very few freedom fighters who spent these long years in jail. He inspired many freedom fighters, built the revolutionary movement and suffered atrocities at the hands of the British. He thought about the Indian freedom struggle even while serving his sentence,” Fadnavis added.

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