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  India   All India  28 Nov 2019  Hey Ram! Row in Lok Sabha as Pragya glorifies Godse

Hey Ram! Row in Lok Sabha as Pragya glorifies Godse

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : Nov 28, 2019, 6:03 am IST
Updated : Nov 28, 2019, 6:03 am IST

Mr Birla said Ms Thakur did not have the permission of the Chair to speak, and that her statement would not go on the record.

BJP Lok Sabha member Pragya Singh Thakur
 BJP Lok Sabha member Pragya Singh Thakur

New Delhi: BJP Lok Sabha member Pragya Singh Thakur set off a fresh controversy in Parliament on Wednesday by terming Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin Nathuram Godse a patriot during the discussion on the SPG Bill in the Lower House. Earlier too, Ms Thakur has referred to Godse as a matyr and a patriot.

On Wednesday, DMK MP A. Raja, talking of threat perceptions and the causes for the assassinations of leaders, mentioned two cases — the killing of General Dyer, responsible for the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, by Udham Singh, and the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi by Nathuram Godse.

Mr Raja was citing Godse’s statement on why he killed Gandhi when Pragya Thakur interrupted and objected to Mr Raja’s statement while glorifying Godse. This drew sharp reactions from Opposition members.

Realising the gaffe, BJP MPs persuaded Ms Thakur to sit down while Speaker Om Birla stopped her and the Opposition MPs from engaging in a war of words.

Mr Birla said Ms Thakur did not have the permission of the Chair to speak, and that her statement would not go on the record.

Mr Raja later went on to complete his sentence, saying Godse had a policy. “Whether it is right or wrong, that is not the subject matter before us today. He (Godse) had a policy. He is having no ill will towards the country but he killed Gandhi for a philosophy,” Mr Raja said, explaining Godse had admitted that he nursed a grudge against Mahatma Gandhi for nearly 32 years before deciding to assassinate him.

Later, responding to the media outside Parliam-ent House, Ms Thakur said she would respond to this on Thursday, while the government defended her saying that she was not referring to Godse. Cabinet ministers too jumped in to save her.

“Her mic was not on. She made the objection when the name of Udham Singh was being taken. She has even explained this and told it to me personally... She did not take the name of Godse or anyone else. There is nothing on record like that. It is not right to simply spread news like that,” parliamentary affairs minister Prahlad Joshi said, while defending Ms Thakur.

This is not the first time Ms Thakur has made such a statement. At the peak of the election campaign in May this year, Ms Thakur ignited a political storm by claiming that Godse was a patriot and would remain one, a statement she later had to retract and apologise for as the BJP distanced itself from her comments.

“Repeatedly referring to Nathuram Godse as a patriot is perfect representation of the BJP’s deplorable hate politics. Will PM Modi condemn Pragya Thakur’s remarks or remain silent?” the Congress asked.

“India celebrates 150th yr of Gandhi Jayanti, but terror accused BJP MP Pragya Thakur celebrates Godse as ‘martyr’ on the floor of Parliament. Modiji, inaction against Pragya proves your latent support to Godse’s sinister thought! India won’t pardon you!” said Congress spokesman Randeep Surjewala.

Tags: pragya singh thakur, nathuram godse