With its newly inducted member Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur kicking up a row by making adverse remarks on former ATS chief Hemant Karkare, who died fighting terrorists during the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks and was posthumously awarded the Ashok Chakra, the Bharatiya Janata Party has distanced itself from her statement.
“(The) probe panel official called Hemant Karkare and asked him to let me go if there is no evidence (against me). He (Karkare) said he would bring evidence from anywhere but not leave me,” Thakur could be heard saying in a video released on Friday by news agency ANI.
“I told him, you will be ruined. And you won’t believe me, he died in less than one and a half months,” she said (in Hindi).
In a statement issued by office secretary Mahendra Pandey, the BJP said: “BJP believes Hemant Karkare attained martyrdom while bravely fighting the terrorists. BJP has always considered him a martyr.”
The statement issued in Hindi on behalf of BJP national media cell head Anil Baluni added: “As far as Sadhvi Pragya’s statement is concerned, it was a personal remark borne out of her years of physical and mental torture.”
The IPS Association condemned Sadhvi Pragya’s remarks and said it was an insult to the officer.
“Ashok Chakra awardee late Hemant Karkare, IPS, made the supreme sacrifice fighting terrorists. Those of us in uniform condemn the insulting statement made by a candidate and demand that sacrifices of all our martyrs be respected,” the Indian Police Service (Central) Association said in a tweet from its official handle on Friday.