Shajapur (Madhya Pradesh): BJP’s Bhopal Lok Sabha candidate Pragya Singh Thakur on Thursday tendered an apology for her ‘Godse is a true patriot’ remark stating that she respects Mahatma Gandhi a lot and his sacrifice for the country cannot be forgotten.
“If someone has been hurt then I apologise for it. What Gandhi ji did for this country cannot be forgotten. I respect him a lot. My statement was misinterpreted and twisted by the media,” Thakur said while speaking to ANI.
Earlier in the day, when questioned about actor-turned-politician Kamal Haasan’s remark that India’s first terrorist was a Hindu (in reference to Godse), Thakur said, “Nathuram Godse was a ‘deshbhakt’, is a ‘deshbhakt’ and will remain a ‘deshbhakt’.”
The BJP leader also said it was her personal statement and she did not mean to hurt someone by her personal views. She also claimed that the media had twisted her remarks.
“This is my personal statement. I was in a roadshow and the way they questioned by adding saffron terror. I answered in haste and my intention was not to hurt anyone. I am a disciplined worker of the party and party’s line is my line,” she said.
Soon after her controversial statement on ‘Godse’, the Opposition parties attacked her saying what she said reflected the mindset of the people nurtured in RSS ideology.
As her comments caused a huge embarrassment to her party, BJP, which has strongly backed her candidature in Bhopal, without much delay tried to control the damage caused by her.
Party spokesperson G V L Narasimha Rao issued a statement saying the party condemns the statement of Thakur and said she should apologize publicly for terming Gandhi’s assassin Godse a “true patriot’.
“We completely disagree with the statement made by Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur about the father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi ji. We strongly condemn this particular statement. The party will ask her for clarification. She should apologize publicly for this statement,” BJP spokesperson GVL Narasimha Rao told media here.
Thakur, an accused in the Malegaon blast case, is not new to courting controversies.
After being fielded by the BJP in Bhopal, she had said Hemant Karkare, who was killed during the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, died because she had cursed him. The statement had attracted all-round criticism including from the BJP which disowned it.