Nathuram Godse A 'Deshbhakt', Says Terror-Accused Pragya Thakur; BJP Drops Her From Defence Panel
Malegaon terror-accused Pragya Thakur has crossed many lines, but on 27th November she set a new low for herself as she referred to Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin, Nathuram Godse, a ‘deshbhakt’ on the floor of the lower house of the Parliament.
Eternally saffron-clad, she became the face of right-wing terrorism after being arrested by the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) in the 2008 Malegaon blast case.
Nathuram Godse has been hailed several times by members of the Sangh Parivar with his pictures being publicly garlanded and effigies of Mahatma Gandhi being shot at in staged re-enactions of his assassination.
However, for the first time in the history of the Indian Parliament, Nathuram Godse – who shot at Gandhi’s chest three times at point-blank range – was referred to as a ‘patriot’. This has set an abominably shallow record for all the diabolical remarks politicians and lawmakers are caught making.
Her comment – which was rebuttal on her part in a Parliamentary debate, triggered a protest by opposition MPs.
Speaker Om Birla said that her comments had been deleted from the record.
The row was triggered during a discussion on the Special Protection Group (Amendment) Bill when DMK member, A Raja, cited a statement of Godse on why he killed Mahatma Gandhi. Thakur interrupted and said, “You cannot give an example of a deshbhakt.”
While Opposition members protested the interruption by Thakur, BJP members persuaded her to sit down. After this, the Speaker said that only A Raja’s statement would be taken on record – a step that could be viewed as problematic and immoral.
The Bharatiya Janata Party was quick to react and terror-accused Thakur was removed from the parliamentary consultative committee on defence, today.
BJP Working President JP Nadda said his party does not support the remark made by her and she will not be allowed to participate in parliamentary party meetings in the Winter Session.
But this is not the first time the BJP loudmouth had glorified the assassin in her speech.
During the 2019 Lok Sabha election campaign this year, she had described Godse as a patriot, causing a huge political storm.
“Nathuram Godse was a deshbhakt, he is and will remain a deshbhakt. Those calling him a terrorist should instead look at themselves. They will be given a befitting reply in this election,” Thakur had commented while attending a roadshow.
This was her response to a comment made by actor-politician Kamal Haasan, who said that independent India’s first “terrorist was a Hindu” – referring to Godse.
In a face-saving attempt, the BJP then had distanced itself from Thakur’s statement and demanded her to issue a public apology.
But Prime Minister Modi, a lifetime member of the RSS – the organisation that Godse had also joined in 1932 – was prompt in his reaction to Thakur’s comment. In a campaign rally for this year’s Lok Sabha elections, he said, “The remarks made about Gandhiji or Nathuram Godse are very bad and very wrong for society. She has sought an apology but I would never be able to forgive her fully.”
BJP also referred the case to the party’s ‘disciplinary action committee’ and Amit Shah said a decision would be taken on whether she will be suspended from the party within ten days.
But despite her relentless and horrifying statements and the accusation of plotting a terror attack to ‘avenge’ the Muslim community, she still sits as a part of the legislature of the Indian democracy.