Mumbai: A protest was held at Azad Maidan, Mumbai on Saturday, where several organisations, activists and journalists came out to protest against the remarks made by three Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders – Ananth Kumar Hegde, Sadhvi Pragya Thakur and Nalin Kateel – against Mahatma Gandhi and praising Nathruam Godse. The protestors demanded these three BJP leaders should be removed from the party.
Speaking aboutm this protest, Feroze Mithiborwala of Bharat Bachao Andolan said, “We have been on a hunger protest from 1.00-6.00 pm. The protestors said if Prime Minister Narendra Modi really loves the values of Mahatma Gandhi as he claims, then he should ensure these three leaders are removed from the party. They have indulged in Hindutva politics since 1948.”
Kamal Haasan had recently said Nathruram Godse is the ‘first terrorist of independent India.’ After which, Pragya, the BJP candidate from Bhopal and prime accused in the 2008 Malegaon blasts, said, ‘Nathuram Godse is a true patriot and will remain so’.
After this controversial statement by Pragya, the BJP MP from Karnataka, Nalin Kumar Kateel and Union Minister, Anant Kumar Hegde issued their support to Pragya on Twitter. BJP has already issued a showcase notice to its three leaders regarding their remarks on Gandhi’s assassin, Godse. “They praised Godse and as if it is not enough, one their leaders even said Mahatma Gandhi should be the Rashtrapita of Pakistan.
Modi only said he will not forgive Pragya but he is not removing them from the party. BJP is the biggest divider and we want Prime Minister to remove these three leaders from the party,” said by Charul Joshi, Secretariat Member of Mumbai, Communist Party of India.
Jatin Desai, a senior journalist, said, “Today, we are here to protest the divisive ideology which propagates the idea of hatred and violence. BJP should not give a ticket to such candidates who are accused of a terror attack and follow the philosophy of Godse.”