Mumbai: Nobody should make statements that insult "martyrs", Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray said Saturday, referring to BJP's Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur's controversial comment on IPS officer Hemant Karkare, who was killed during the 26/11 Mumbai attacks.
Thakur, the BJP's Bhopal Lok Sabha seat candidate and an accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case, is under fire for claiming that Karkare died in the attack as she had "cursed" him for "torturing" her. "Nobody should make statements that insult martyrs. Sadhvi made a wrong comment, for which she later apologised," Thackeray told reporters here.
Thakur's comments had drawn flak from Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis as well on Friday. "Late Mr Karkare was a very brave and upright police officer and will be revered as a martyr forever. Sadhvi Pragya's remark is her personal opinion and we don't support it," Fadnavis had said. "She has also apologised and said that it (the statement) was made out of personal pain. However, I feel that such a statement should never be made," the chief minister had said. Investigations in the blast case was led by Karkare, who was the then chief of the Maharashtra anti-terrorism squad.
Thakur at a rally in Bhopal on Thursday had said Karkare committed an "anti-national" act by falsely implicating her in the Malegaon blast case and keeping her behind bars without evidence."It was treason. It was against religion," she said. "He tortured me and subjected me to harsh abuse which was unbearable. I told him he will be destroyed. A little over a month later 'sutak' (ritual observed after death of a family member) was going to start...just over a month later, he was shot dead by terrorists and the inauspicious period ended," she had said.
Out on bail, Thakur has been discharged by a court on charges under the stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) in the 2008 case, but is still facing trial under other criminal provisions, including the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.
On Friday, according to an aide of hers, she apologised for her remarks at a public meeting in Madhya Pradesh's Berasia area. Her aide Upma Singh said, "Pragya ji said if her remarks have hurt someone, she was sorry for it.". "I felt that the enemies of the country were being benefited from it (my remarks), so I take back my statement and apologise for it. It was my personal pain," the aide quoted Thakur as saying.
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