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Politics

After Her Kabaddi Video Goes Viral, Pragya Thakur Terms the Man Who Shot It As 'Ravana'

The BJP MP sought and received exemption from physically appearing in the court in connection with the 2008 Malegaon blasts case on medical grounds. 

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New Delhi: After a viral video showed her playing kabaddi, Bhopal’s BJP MP Pragya Singh Thakur, who was confined to a wheelchair for a long time and had obtained bail in the 2008 Malegaon blast case on medical grounds, described the man who shot and circulated the clip as “Ravana” and said his old age and next birth will be spoiled.

The video that went viral on social media showed Thakur playing a game of kabaddi on the premises of Kali temple. Earlier, another video of her taking part in a Garba dance during the just-concluded Navratri festival had emerged. She was granted exemption from physically appearing in the court after she had moved it citing her health issues in January this year.

Reacting to the viral video, she said, “I went for offering aarti (at a Durga pandal) two days back, when some sportsmen playing on a ground requested me to conduct a (kabaddi) raid. A small clip of this was captured and shown in the media.”

Thakur made the statement while speaking during a Dussehra programme in Bhopal’s Sant Nagar (Bairagarh), a Sindhi community-dominated area, on Friday night.

“If someone fretted and fumed, it was Ravana among you, some Sindhi brother…someone who is a big enemy (of mine). I am not his enemy, but he considered me as his enemy. I don’t know what precious thing I snatched from him…But Ravana can be anywhere,” she added.

“I am telling the person, whose sanskaras have got spoiled, to mend them. If you don’t, your old age and next birth will also get spoiled because whenever anyone has clashed with the patriots, revolutionaries and above all saints, neither Ravana or Kansa survived, nor will the ‘adharmi’ or ‘vidharmi’ of the present be saved,” she said.

Also read: ‘Too Ill’ to Appear in Court, BJP’s Pragya Thakur Seen Dancing at Wedding, Playing Basketball

She said that her Tapasya (penance) and meditation were for the public.

Criticising the BJP leader over her remarks, the Congress said she follows the ideology of the demon king and of those who represent the evil.

Madhya Pradesh Congress spokesperson K.K. Mishra on Saturday said, “Those who follow the ideology of Ravana, see the demon king everywhere. The Bhopal MP follows the ideology of those who represent the evil.”

On the other hand, MP Congress leaders, while taking a swipe at Pragya Thakur accused her of having many faces as sometimes she is seen in a wheelchair, sometimes she plays Garba and kabaddi too.

Defending the Bhopal MP, her elder sister Upma Thakur had earlier said that she suffers from a spine problem, which can give trouble to her any time.

“You never know at which moment it can create problems for her. There is a problem with her L4 and L5 bones (vertebrae) as they got dislocated because ATS Maharashtra (investigators) threw her on the floor.

“Whenever these problems occur, the lower portion (of her body) is left with no sensation….It can happen even when she sits or gets down from a vehicle,” Upma had said.

Past instances 

This is not the first time when the terror-accused MP was seen dancing after she had sought exemption from appearing in the court citing health issues. Two videos of her went viral in July – while she was seen playing basketball in one video, she was seen breaking into Garba during a wedding in another video.

While she usually moves around in a wheelchair, the first video showed her dribbling a basketball, walking around and scoring a basket. In another video, she was seen dancing at a twin wedding she helped organise, at her MP’s residence.

Thakur spent nine years in jail in the 2008 Malegaon blasts’ case before being granted bail in 2017. In January this year, the special National Investigation Agency (NIA) court in Mumbai had granted Thakur exemption from physical appearance until further orders. She had appeared before the special court on January 4 and filed an application seeking permanent exemption on medical and other grounds.

Six people were killed and 100 injured when an explosive device strapped to a motorcycle went off near a mosque in Malegaon in north Maharashtra on September 29, 2008.

(With PTI inputs)