Days after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP from Bhopal Pragya Singh Thakur courted a massive controversy by calling Nathuram Godse a patriot, an MLA from the saffron party Usha Thakur has purportedly called Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin a nationalist.
It is to be noted that Usha Thakur is a BJP MLA from Mhow, Madhya Pradesh. The video of Usha Thakur calling Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin a nationalist has gone viral on social media.
In the video, we can hear a channel reporter asking Usha Thakur whether she considers Godse a nationalist. The BJP MLA is heard saying that he was a nationalist.
"Godse ek rashtrawadi the, unhone jeevanbhar desh ki chinta ki, us samay kya kaal paristhiti rahi hogi jo unhone aisa nirnay liya, ye toh vahi jaante honge (Godse was a nationalist, who was concerned about the nation throughout his life. The circumstances under which he decided to assassinate Gandhiji were known to him only)," said Usha Thakur.
Soon after the controversial statement, other BJP leaders came in support of Usha Thakur. Convener of the Madhya Pradesh BJP disciplinary committee, Babu Singh Raghuwanshi, told PTI, "A section of media continuously asks BJP leaders unrestrained questions about Godse. In the current situation, these questions are irrelevant."
"As far as Thakurs video on social media is concerned, I think it is an edited version and an unwanted controversy is being created by just catching a particular word,” he said.
In the meantime, State Congress spokesperson Neelabh Shukla said, "The statements of Pragya and now Thakur on Godse have revealed the true face of the BJP." “Both tried to glorify Mahatma Gandhi's killer and in the process committed a sin," he added
The Congress spokesperson further demanded that the BJP should immediately expel Pragya Thakur and Usha Thakur and apologise to the nation for their poisonous statements.
Previously, on May 16 this year, Pragya Singh Thakur had described Nathuram Godse as a patriot. She had said, "Nathuram Godse was a deshbhakt (patriot), 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."
Her remarks created a major row with the opposition parties attacking her and the BJP with the NCP saying people can now see the ‘real face’ of the Amit Shah-led party and the Congress demanding an apology from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Attacking the BJP and Thakur, Congress' chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala had said, "It is clear, the BJP people are the descendants of Godse. BJP people say Godse was a patriot and martyr Hemant Karkare was a traitor. Culture of violence and insulting martyrs is the DNA of the BJP."
However, Pragya Singh Thakur later apologised for her remarks and also undertook a 63-hours silent period (maun vrat) over it. The apology came after Prime Minister Narendra Modi made it clear that he will never forgive her for her remarks.
With inputs from PTI