BJP candidate Pragya Singh Thakur addresses a party workers meeting for Lok Sabha polls, in Bhopal (Source: PTI)

Congress Attacks BJP For Fielding Terror-Accused Pragya As Candidate

Strongly criticising the Bharatiya Janata Party for fielding Malegaon blast accused Pragya Singh Thakur from Bhopal for the Lok Sabha election, Congress said that the ruling party’s view on terrorism stands exposed with the decision.

Congress spokesperson A. Vinayaraj condemned Thakur's statement on anti-terrorist squad chief Hemant Karkare who was killed in action during the 2008 Mumbai attacks. “BJP, which speaks loudly about nationalism, has shown its true colours by choosing a candidate accused in a case linked to terrorism,” Vinayaraj told reporters in Mangaluru.

“No BJP leader, including the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, had uttered a single world against her statement that Karkare met his fate on her curse after she was allegedly tortured in custody.”

BJP's Bhopal Lok Sabha candidate Prgaya Singh Thakur, an accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case, had claimed that Karkare died in the Mumbai attacks as she had "cursed" him. The remarks caused a furore, forcing BJP to distance itself from them, and compelled Thakur to issue an apology on Friday evening.

The Election Commission issued a notice to Pragya Singh Thakur over her remarks seeking explanation under the model code of conduct.

Vinayaraj said Thakur should not be allowed to contest from any constituency in the country if the BJP is concerned about the safety of the nation. The Prime Minister should take strict action against Thakur if he has any respect for martyrs, he said.

Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel Saturday hit out at the BJP's "double standards" for talking about fighting terrorism and then giving tickets to those who are criticising martyrs. He was speaking in Rajkot.

Patel added that Narendra Modi will become ex-Prime Minister on May 23 when the Lok Sabha results are announced. He said public anger would ensure that the BJP and its allies will not get more than 200 seats in the April-May Lok Sabha polls. "I am saying with full confidence, and also with pain because he (Modi) is from Gujarat and the country's PM, that when poll results are announced on May 23, Modi's name will have the prefix ex-PM."

Earlier in the week, BJP President Amit Shah had defended Thakur's ticket from Bhopal saying that she was picked to contest against Congress veteran Digvijay Singh and punish him for the conspiracy to raise the "bogey" of Hindu terror.