Mumbai: Under fire for his casteist remarks against the Brahmin community, Congress-NCP’s alliance partner Raju Shetti on Friday issued an apology.
Speaking at a rally in Hatkanangale on Wednesday, Mr Shetti had purportedly said that while farmers’ children joined the Army and fought for the country, those of "the Deshpandes and Kulkarnis" (denoting Brahmins) shunned the Army but preached to others about patriotism.
A complaint was filed with the Election Commission on Thursday against the Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana leader by one Ankit Kane of the Brahmin Jagruti Seva Sangh.
Speaking at Kolhapur on Friday, Mr Shetti said that he did not intend to hurt the sentiments of any community, adding that he was speaking about giving justice to the martyrs’ kin.
Claiming that he did not have a ‘casteist’ mindset, Mr Shetti said, “As I come from Kolhapur, which is the karmabhoomi of Shahu Maharaj, and started my public life with Shetkari Sanghatana founder Sharad Joshi, casteist thought cannot even touch my mind.”
“I offer my apology to the people who were hurt by my statement,” he added. Mr Shetti is contesting from Hatkanangale in in western Maharashtra.