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'Worst Attack So Far...But I'll Risk My Life Again': Nikhil Wagle on Pune Attack

"Getting scared by such cowardly attacks is not in our culture," Nikhil Wagle wrote in his statement.

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India
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Senior journalist Nikhil Wagle was attacked in Pune allegedly by workers of the Bharatiya Janata Party on Friday, 9 February. The attack took place allegedly over Wagle's critical remarks on BJP leader LK Advani and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Wagle has issued a statement on Saturday, 10 February, a day after the attack thanking those who stood by him and expressing his commitment to "defeating fascism".

Here's his statement translated from Marathi by The Quint.

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Dear friends, brothers and sisters,

Yesterday, death stood at the door. I survived only because of your love.

Asim Sarode, who did not back down even if the broken glass fell to save me from hurt, Vaibhav, our charioteer who risked his life to drive our car, Advocate Shriya who took the attack from the front seat, Vishwambhar who supported me till the end, Bunty who fought the attackers on the road, Bhakti Kumbar. And how can I repay the debt of countless activists? Rahul Dambale, who wrestled with the BJP goons, Prashantada Jagtap's Kumak... Nitin Vaidya who took the risk to bring me back to Mumbai... How many of you do I name? I am indebted to everyone.

I have faced six attacks so far. Yesterday's attack was the worst. Stones, sticks, hockey sticks, rods, eggs, ink - everything was used. We were chased four times in just half an hour and then surrounded. The attack took place with the connivance of the police.

It is my belief that we all survived yesterday only with the blessings of Phule-Ambedkar.

Now, the next phase of my life is for you. We will uproot fascism from Maharashtra. Getting scared by such cowardly attacks is not in our culture. I will risk my life again so that this country does not become a Hindu Pakistan.

I can never repay all of you. You all worked hard to make yesterday's meeting a success. How can I thank you?

I still cannot say much. Still shocked by what happened yesterday. Will speak to you all in detail in the evening.

❤️

Yours,

Nikhil

(Statement translated from Marathi by Eshwar.)

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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Topics:  BJP   LK Advani   Maharashtra Politics 

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