sadhvi pragya
The BJP MP from Bhopal, Sadhvi Pragya Thakur referred to Mahatma Gandhi's assassin Nathuram Godse as a "deshbhakt" during a debate in Lok Sabha.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is likely to expel Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, one of the key accused in Malegaon terrorist attack case, from the party. Thakur, who won the 2019 Lok Sabha election from Bhopal, hailed Nathuram Godse, Mahatma Gandhi's assassin, in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday, November 27.

Reacting to Pragya Thakur's comment, BJP working president JP Nadda said, "We don't support Pragya Thakur's remark on Nathuram Godse." The BJP disciplinary panel is likely to expel her from the party. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh also condemned Pragya Thakur's comment. "Gandhiji is our inspiration," Rajnath Singh said.

On one hand, the nation celebrated Mahatma Gandhi's 150th birth anniversary, but on the other hand, Pragya Thakur has reiterated herself in Lok Sabha with comments which were certainly uncalled for.

Sadhvi Pragya BJP candidate
The BJP disiplinary panel is likely to expel her from the party.

The BJP MP from Bhopal referred to Mahatma Gandhi's assassin Nathuram Godse as a "deshbhakt" during a debate in Lok Sabha. Pragya Thakur's comments triggered a protest by opposition members in the House. When DMK member A Raja cited a statement of Godse on why he killed Mahatma Gandhi during a discussion on the Special Protection Group (Amendment) Bill, Thakur interrupted and said, "You cannot give example of a deshbhakt."

BJP MP axed from Defence panel

Thakur, who was nominated to the Parliamentary Consultative Committee of the Ministry of Defence, has been expelled a day after Godse remark. According to the government notification dated October 21, the 21-member parliamentary consultative committee is headed by Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.

Thakur's role in Malegaon terrorist attack

In a series of blasts that ripped through Malegaon, a town around 280 km from Mumbai, on September 29, 2008, six people died and around 100 were injured. Pragya Thakur, prime accused in the case, was arrested by the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) and was in jail for nine years. Thakur has been out on bail by the Bombay High Court since April 2017 on grounds of ill health.

2008 Malegaon Blasts
Local residents and policemen clear debris at a blast site in Malegaon, about 260km from Mumbai, September 30, 2008.Reuters

Back in 2015, Sadhvi Pragya was given a clean chit by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) as there was no evidence against her, but the trial court refused to let her off as a motorcycle belonging to her was used in the blast. The court had to drop the charges against her under the stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) but is trying her under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

Other shockers

Earlier, Thakur had courted controversy with her remarks on a number of occasions. She had landed in a major controversy when she called Nathuram Godse, who assassinated Mahatma Gandhi, a patriot. The BJP had even issued a show-cause notice to Pragya over the remarks. Thakur had also stirred controversy by saying that then Mumbai ATS chief Hemant Karkare had died during the 26/11 terror attack because of her "curse".