After facing a massive backlash over her comments boasting about her "curse" on 26/11 hero Hemant Karkare, BJP leader Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur on Friday evening apologized saying that she is "taking back her words" while adding that Hemant Karkare was killed by terrorists and is certainly is a martyr.
"If my remarks made enemies happy, then I take my words back, and I apologise too. Our remarks shouldn't make enemies happy. The pain I went through, it can't be reversed, but terrorists killed Hemant Karkare, he certainly is a martyr," she said while talking to news agency ANI.
The BJP had included Sadhvi Pragya on Wednesday and made her the candidate from Bhopal for the ongoing Lok Sabha elections. While addressing a Press Conference on Thursday, she bragged saying, "I had told him you will be finished, and he was killed by terrorists in less than two months," referring to Hemant Karkare, the Cheif of Anti-Terrorist Squad of Mumbai who died during the 26/11 attacks. He had investigated Sadhvi Pragya in connection with the blasts in Malegaon two months before that.
"The investigation team called Hemant Karkare and said if you do not have evidence, let her go. He said I will do anything to get evidence against her. I won't let her go. This was his hatred (kuteelta). He was anti-national. He was dharam virudh (anti-religion). You won't believe, but I said, 'tera sarvanashhoga'. Just after 'sawa' month, terrorists killed him," said Sadhvi Pragya to reporters on Thursday. "That day, there was a sutak (inauspicious period) on him. That sutak ended the day he was killed," she said, giving examples of mythical villains killed because of the curse of saints.
Mr Karkare was the first officer to investigate the blasts on September 29, 2008, in which six people were killed and 101 injured in Malegaon, a town 250 km from Mumbai. Lt Col Shrikant Purohit, Sadhvi Pragya and others were arrested and charged for being the masterminds behind the blasts.
The statement was supported by the party who said, "Today, the party said Sadhvi Pragya's remarks may have been driven by the torture she faced when she was in jail in the 2008 Malegaon blasts."
Though the party also maintained that the statements made by Sadhvi Pragya were "personal", she claimed the party had not distanced itself from her comments. "I said what I felt, the party hasn't distanced itself from my remarks, they stated the right thing, that it was my personal account," she said. Pragya was the number one accused in the case and was given a clean chit by the National Investigation Agency in 2015hwoever, the trial court had refused to let her go.
Several political parties called out at Pragya for her comments and termed it as "disgraceful."