BJP MP Pragya Thakur who has attracted attention for all the wrong reasons, recently on Wednesday when she described Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin Nathuram Godse as a patriot in parliament, has been removed from the consultative committee of the defence ministry.
Her comments had sparked outrage, with the opposition in Lok Sabha condemning what it called the “BJP’s deplorable hate politics” and Speaker Om Birla expunging her remarks from the record. “We have decided that Pragya Singh Thakur will be removed from the consultative committee of defence, and in this session she will not be allowed to participate in BJP parliamentary party meetings,” said BJP’s working president JP Nadda.
The Congress, TMC and IUML have given Adjournment Motion Notice in Lok Sabha over Thakur’s remarks. Thakur had made the remarks while a discussion was underway on the Special Protection Group (Amendment) Bill.
“Her statement yesterday in the parliament is condemnable. BJP never supports such statement or ideology,” said Nadda. Pragya Thakur, a first-time MP, made the Godse comment during a discussion on the Special Protection Group (Amendment) Bill on Wednesday. As protests erupted in the house, BJP members asked Pragya Thakur to sit down. “That is the heart of the RSS and the BJP. That is their soul and no matter how much they say otherwise, it will always come out,” said Congress MP Rahul Gandhi.
Terrorist Pragya calls terrorist Godse, a patriot.
A sad day, in the history of
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) November 28, 2019
Later, pressed by reporters to clarify her remarks, Pragya Thakur said, “Listen to what I said first. I’d reply tomorrow.” “The very soch (thinking) of Nathuram Godse being deshbhakt (patriot), should end,” Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said in parliament today.
नाथूराम गोडसे को देशभक्त कहे जाने की बात तो दूर हम उन्हें देशभक्त मानने की सोच को ही condemn करते हैं।
महात्मा गांधी हम लोगों के आदर्श हैं।वे पहले भी हमारे मार्गदर्शक थे और भविष्य में भी मार्गदर्शक रहेंगे।
उनकी विचारधारा उस समय भी प्रासंगिक थी, आज भी है और आगे भी रहेगी। pic.twitter.com/WH6y09VOVt
— Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) November 28, 2019
There was outrage and social media debate after Pragya Thakur was last week listed among the 21 members of the parliamentary consultative committee on Defence chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. The BJP had said that the first-time MP can help in “framing right methodology” so that innocents are not “victimised” the way she was by the Congress-led government.
Pragya Thakur, a 2008 Malegaon blasts accused, is out on bail and is facing trial for charges under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. She had been berated earlier this year by her party for calling Nathuram Godse a patriot. “Nathuram Godse was a ‘deshbhakt’, is a ‘deshbhakt’ and will remain a ‘deshbhakt’,” she had said while campaigning for the national election.
Thakur was granted bail by the Bombay High Court on health grounds in April 2017 after charges against her under the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) were dropped by the National Investigation Agency(NIA). She is currently under trial for multiple charges under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.
Her remarks during the Lok Sabha election campaign where she described Nathuram Godse, Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin, as a “patriot” sparked fury from the opposition. She also drew flak for insulting 26/11 Mumbai attack martyr Hemant Karkare as a traitor, who was investigating her role in the Malegaon blast case and rising Hindu extremism.
Confronting massive backlash, the BJP publicly condemned her remarks and Prime Minister Narenda Modi said, “These kinds of statements made about Gandhiji are condemnable and cannot be allowed in civilised society. She may have apologised, but I shall never forgive her.”