Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala addressing a press conference in New Delhi on Thursday. Photo/ANI
Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala addressing a press conference in New Delhi on Thursday. Photo/ANI

India's soul under attack from Godse's successors, Modi-Shah must apologise: Cong

ANI | Updated: May 16, 2019 18:06 IST

New Delhi [India], May 16 (ANI): Congress on Thursday came all guns blazing against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah demanding an "apology" from them after BJP leader Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur hailed Nathuram Godse, the man who murdered Mahatma Gandhi, as a "true patriot".
Addressing a press conference here, Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala termed the statement made by Thakur an 'attack on India's soul.'
"India's soul is again under attack from the successors of Godse, the current ruling dispensation. BJP's leaders are describing Godse as true nationalist and declaring those who sacrificed their lives for the nation like Hemant Karkare as anti-nationals," Surjewala told media here.
"You have the audacity to commit sacrilege by saying that murderer of Mahatma Gandhi was a martyr. Just because a BJP spokesperson says will not do. Narendra Modi and Amit Shah must apologise to the nation and withdraw her (Sadhvi's) candidature. You cannot hide behind the statement of the person," he said.
Surjewala went on to say that BJP's Bhopal candidate, who also happens to be the "favourite" of the "Modi-Shah duo" has crossed all limits. "The favourite of Modi-Shah duo crossed all limits today and committed the unpardonable sin of describing Nathuram Godse as true nationalist. BJP and its leaders are deliberately and as a part of conspiracy attacking the thoughts, the entire way of life and also the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi."
"This is an insult to the Indian way of life, the Gandhian way of life that lives in India's soul. This is an unpardonable sin. The truth is that insulting India's martyrs and denigrating them has become the culture of BJP," Surjewala added.
He also recalled that only recently, Thakur had termed 26/11 Mumbai attack braveheart Hemant Karkare as "anti-national".
"She (Pragya) also chose phrases and words about her family which is unacceptable in a society. Yet Modiji did not punish her, did not withdraw her candidature but proceeded to defend her through TV interviews," the Congress spokesperson claimed.
He also alleged that the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh remained a mute spectator when on the 71st death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, an organisation affiliated to RSS reenacted his assassination in Meerut.
"Earlier, Sakshi Maharaj had described Nathuram Godse as a martyr in the premises of the parliament. BJP'a Ratlam candidate is saying that Md. Jinnah would have been a better first Prime Minister. PM Modi does not punish him but patting him on the back by going to Ratlam to say that he should be elected," Surjewala said.
"The simple question is when PM abuses the first Prime Minister of the country, is he carrying the same culture? We call upon the Prime Minister to render an unconditional apology to the nation and take punitive action against Pragya Thakur. Otherwise, it will be more than proved all these acts of denigrating the father of the nation, Mahatma Gandhi by the ilk of Pragya Thakur has the active concurrence of the Prime Minister and BJP leadership," he said.
He also rejected the statement made by BJP spokesperson GVL Narasimha Rao, calling upon Thakur to apologise for her comments.
"This has become the unique culture of the BJP. They ask Pragya Thakur to abuse our martyr Hemant Karkare. They make her say foul language against his family. Modi and Shah do not utter a word and a junior spokesperson comes to say something and brush it aside. The Prime Minister goes on television to defend Pragya Thakur. Pragya did an unpardonable act. Why did Modi and Shah not withdraw her candidature the first time around?" Surjewala questioned.
Thakur on Thursday stoked yet another controversy by terming Nathuram Godse, the man who assassinated Mahatma Gandhi, as a 'deshbhakt' (patriot).
"Nathuram Godse was a 'deshbhakt', is a 'deshbhakt' and will remain a 'deshbhakt'," she said in Bhopal when questioned about actor-turned-politician Kamal Haasan's remark that India's first terrorist was a Hindu, referring to Godse. (ANI)