Hemant Karkare died due to his 'Karma', says Pragya Thakur
BJP's Bhopal candidate Pragya Thakur stirred a new controversy on Friday after she said former Mumbai Anti-Terrorist Squad chief Hemant Karkare died because of his 'karma'. Karkare had passed away on November 26, 2008, when Mumbai was attacked by Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorists. Pragya, who is prime accused of 2008 Malegaon blast case, claimed Karkare treated her "badly" in jail and she "cursed" him.
Told Karkare his entire dynasty will be erased: Pragya
A series of blasts rocked Malegaon, a small town some 280 km away from Mumbai, on September 8, 2006. Five people died in the attack and 100 were injured. Based on forensic evidence, a team led by Karkare arrested Pragya. But Pragya has claimed she is innocent and said Karkare tortured her. "I told him your entire dynasty will be erased," she said.
Watch: Pragya slamming 26/11 hero in speech
#WATCH Pragya Singh Thakur:Maine kaha tera (Mumbai ATS chief late Hemant Karkare) sarvanash hoga.Theek sava mahine mein sutak lagta hai. Jis din main gayi thi us din iske sutak lag gaya tha.Aur theek sava mahine mein jis din atankwadiyon ne isko maara, us din uska anth hua (18.4) pic.twitter.com/COqhEW2Bnc— ANI (@ANI) April 19, 2019
Soon, AAP asked BJP to apologize for Pragya's comments
As soon as the video of Pragya's speech emerged, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) launched a scathing attack on BJP. AAP asked BJP to apologize for Pragya's comments and wrote, "The nation is proud and indebt of Mumbai ATS Chief Hemant Karkare who laid down his life fighting against the terrorist during the 26/11 attack." The party also said BJP was insulting martyrs.
BJP is showing its true colors, tweeted Kejriwal
Disgraceful comments by BJP's Bhopal Lok Sabha candidate Pragya Thakur on 26/11 martyr Hemant Karkare ji need to be condemned in strongest terms. BJP is showing its true colours it must be shown it's place now https://t.co/3Qdo1x7kPI— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) April 19, 2019
Notably, Pragya is out on bail
It should be noted that Karkare arrested Pragya on the basis of forensic evidence. The engine of motorcycle used for the attack was allegedly registered in her name. Though Maharashtra Control of Organized Crime Act (MCOC) charges against Pragya have been dropped, she is facing trial under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA). In 2017, Bombay High Court granted her bail after she submitted that she had breast cancer.
Meanwhile, father of victim moved court against Pragya's candidature
After BJP announced Pragya's name, Nisar Sayeed moved the special court to lodge a protest against her. Nisar lost his son in the blast and he pointed out that she is "clearly healthy enough to fight elections in the crippling summer heat, which means she has misguided the court". Special judge VS Padalkar sought replies from NIA and Pragya while posting matter for Monday.
In highly-polarizing battle, Pragya will take on Digvijaya Singh
Pragya has been fielded against Congress stalwart Digvijaya Singh. Bhopal is essentially a BJP bastion and has voted for the party since 1989. After she formally joined politics, Pragya said, "After spending 10 years in jail due to Congress conspiracy, I have come here to fight the political and religious war." She is expected to file her nomination on May 23.