‘Insult to nation’: Cong over Pragya Thakur’s nomination on House defence panel
All members of Parliament, who are not ministers, are members of various panels of either of the Houses. Members are entitled to be in theses standing, as well as consultative, committees.Updated: Nov 21, 2019 17:37 IST
The Congress party on Thursday launched an attack on the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government for nominating Pragya Thakur, the controversial Bhopal lawmaker, to the consultative parliamentary panel of the ministry of defence.
Pragya Thakur, an accused in the 2008 Malegaon bomb blast case in Maharashtra, is one of the 21 members of the Parliamentary Consultative Committee of the Ministry of Defence headed by defence minister Rajnath Singh.
“Pragya Thakur, a terror accused and Godse fanatic has been nominated by the BJP government to be a member of the Parliamentary Panel on Defence. This move is an insult to our nation’s defence forces, to our nation’s esteemed parliamentarians & to every Indian,” the opposition party tweeted.
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The Congress also said it was ironic that such a person has been given place instead of opting for clean leaders.
“Bringing such people, against whom the cases are going in court is not good for democracy. Everything is not guided by the Constitution but some decisions are taken on moral grounds too,” the Congress leader said, according to news agency IANS.
“The BJP had won 303 seats and they have multiple options and many of whom are clean, with no cases against them. They should have been nominated in the Defence panel,” Jha was quoted as saying by the news agency.
The BJP has not responded to the Congress’ criticism.
All members of Parliament, who are not ministers, are members of various panels of either of the Houses. Members are entitled to be in theses standing, as well as consultative, committees.
The Lok Sabha Speaker or Rajya Sabha chairperson also nominate many of them in ad hoc committees such as those on privileges, petitions and MPLADs, of the respective houses.
Pragya Thakur is also a member of the department related to the standing committee on railways.
She was granted bail by the Bombay High Court on grounds of poor health in April 2017 after charges against her under the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act were dropped by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
Pragya Thakur is facing multiple charges under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and various other acts.
The BJP had issued a gag order in July this year against the controversial MP after embarrassing the leadership with a string of gaffes.
Pragya Thakur had stoked a controversy after she claimed that Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin Nathuram Godse was a patriot.
She apologised for the remarks but the row forced Prime Minister Narendra Modi to attempt some damage control as he claimed that he would never forgive Thakur for what she said.
She had said in July that “black magic” practised by the Opposition may have been behind deaths of top leaders of the BJP, including former Union ministers Arun Jaitley and Sushma Swaraj, and former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Babulal Gaur.
Apart from these, Thakur has made several controversial statements in the past.
She said Mumbai’s anti-terrorist squad chief Hemant Karkare, who died in the 26/11 terrorist attacks in Mumbai, had perished because of a curse had put on him when he was investigating the blasts.
At another point of time, Thakur also claimed that cow urine had cured her of cancer.
The first time parliamentarian had defeated former chief minister of Madhya Pradesh and Congress leader Digvijaya Singh in the Lok Sabha elections earlier this year.