Bhopal/New Delhi: Sources in the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) have said that Union minister Uma Bharti’s comment referring to BJP candidate from Bhopal Sadhvi Pragya Thakur, “She is a great saint; I am a fool,” had not gone down well with the Sangh leaders. While Uma Bharti was asked to cosy up to Sadhvi, outgoing Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan was asked to issue statements that would make the constituency believe all is well in the Parivar.
Uma Bharti has had a long career in politics, which includes several victories she secured for the party, including one from an election in Bhopal. Besides, she holds a special attraction in the OBC community owing to her Lodh Rajput community. Sources say she was miffed at the denial of the BJP ticket to her from Bhopal. She believed she had a stronger claim to the seat that went to Sadhvi Pragya Thakur.
However, following the message from the RSS top brass, Uma Bharti has been working on mending her relationship with Sadhvi Pragya Thakur. The senior leader went to the extent of touching the feet of the junior during a public meeting.
While the RSS frowned at Uma Bharti, a section of the BJP was uncomfortable with Sadhvi Pragya Thakur for her comment on Maharashtra ATS’s late Hemant Karkare, about whom she had said her “curse” might have killed him. The Election Commission had then put restrictions on her campaign.
But the VHP, from whose office Sadhvi’s campaign is being managed in Bhopal, is of the opinion that her statement is no longer the talk of the town and, hence, there is no need for the party to be on the backfoot on the issue.
Madhya Pradesh: BJP's candidate from Bhopal, Pragya Singh Thakur campaigns for elections; On May 1, Election Commission of India had banned her from campaigning for 72 hours for her remarks on Babri Masjid. #LokSabhaElections2019 pic.twitter.com/YOXWAPHLmp
— ANI (@ANI) May 5, 2019
The RSS had, in the meantime, asked Sumitra and Poonam Mahajan to reinterpret Sadhvi’s comment about Karkare before the media.
Sadhvi Pragya Thakur’s win is important to the Sangh Parivar. Now they have thrown all their weight behind the campaign. “Differences in opinion within the Parivar are a thing of the past,” a swayamsevak said, participating in the BJP campaign in Bhopal. “We are determined to teach the Congress and its candidate from Bhopal Digvijaya Singh,” he said.
Besides Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh, Begusarai in Bihar and Pathanamthitta in Kerala are prestige battles for the Sangh. “Giriraj Singh deserved our full support for taking on an anti-national element from JNU, Kanhaiya Kumar,” a campaigner of the BJP, who returned from Bihar after Begusarai polling six days ago, said.
“We must win Pathanamthitta, where lies the abode of Lord Ayyappa in Sabarimala,” the BJP worker said, adding that the issue of the tradition of the sect animated Hindus across India and the world, making it a core issue of indigenous culture, which the RSS is committed to upholding but “vidharmis” (the irreligious) are up to destroying.
For important reports related to the Lok Sabha election of 2019, visit this page.