Karkare a Martyr But His Role ‘Not Above Board’: Sumitra Mahajan
Sumitra Mahajan claimed that Karkare’s role as chief of Maharashtra anti-terrorism squad was “not above board”.
Amid the growing controversy surrounding Pragya Thakur, and her comments on slain IPS officer Hemant Karkare, BJP’s MP from Indore and Lok Sabha speaker Sumitra Mahajan said on Monday, 29 April, that Karkare “became a martyr” because he died in the line of duty.
She, however, also claimed that his role as the chief of Maharashtra anti-terrorism squad (ATS) was “not above board”, The Indian Express reported.
“There are two aspects to Hemant Karkare. He became a martyr because he died in the line of duty, but if his role as a police officer was not correct, we will say it was not correct,’’ Mahajan told the newspaper.
She also alleged that Congress’ Lok Sabha candidate from Bhopal Digvijaya Singh – contesting opposite Thakur – was a ‘friend of Karkare’.
The report quoted her as saying that when Singh was the Madhya Pradesh CM, “he frequently accused the RSS of making bombs and being a terror outfit”.
She also alleged that “arrests made by Maharashtra ATS from Indore were at the behest of the former CM.”
Digvijaya, responding to Mahajan’s remarks, tweeted: “Sumitra tai, I am proud that you associate me with Ashoka Chakra winner martyr Hemant Karkare. Your associates may insult him but I have always backed those talking about country’s interest, national unity and integrity.’’
On Sunday, Union Minister and RPI (A) chief Ramdas Athawale had said that he disagreed with Thakur's comments on Karkare. He also slammed the ruling dispensation for its decision to field the Malegaon blast accused from Bhopal, adding that his party would never have given her a ticket.
“Her name had figured in the Malegaon case and Karkare had enough evidence against her,” the Union minister had said.
Thakur had earlier said that Karkare was killed in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack as she had "cursed" him for "torturing" her while he was probing the 2008 Malegaon blast case.
She is an accused in the Malegaon blast case and is currently out on bail.
(With inputs from The Indian Express, PTI)
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