Union minister Nitin Gadkari on Tuesday thanked Congress leader Rahul Gandhi for giving the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) the ‘opportunity to take Veer Savarkar to every household of the country’.
Addressing a gathering organised as part of the ‘Savarkar Gaurav Yatra’ at Shankar Nagar in Maharashtra’s Nagpur, the Union minister said, “Insulting Veer Savarkar hasn’t made his stature any smaller, instead, we received the opportunity to take him to every home. We are thankful to Rahul Gandhi for giving us the opportunity to take the truth and Savarkar to every household. Rahul Gandhi should continue with this.”
Nitin Gadkari’s comments came days after Rahul Gandhi stirred a massive row by issuing insulting remarks against VD Savarkar. Responding to the BJP’s calls for an apology after he was convicted in a criminal defamation case by a court in Surat, defiant Rahul said, “My name is not Savarkar. I am a Gandhi and I won’t apologise.”
Notably, in efforts to honour Savarkar and counter Rahul Gandhi’s insulting remarks, the saffron party and Chief Minister Eknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena have organised “Savarkar Gaurav Yatras” in Maharashtra.
Seeking an apology from the Congress scion, Union minister Nitin Gadkari said that Rahul Gandhi should apologise for his critical remarks on the late Hindutva ideologue VD Savarkar. The BJP leader said the former Congress president should show a big heart and tender an apology for the ‘crime’ he has done unknowingly.
“Who has given him the right to insult Savarkar? No one will tolerate the insult of Savarkar,” Gadkari asserted.
Rahul Gandhi, who was disqualified from Lok Sabha after being convicted in the criminal defamation case over the ‘Modi surname’ remark on March 25, clearly denied issuing an apology by bringing Savarkar into the matter. Refuting to apologise for his “How come all thieves have Modi as the common surname” remark he made at a rally in Karnataka in 2019 ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, Rahul Gandhi said that his name is not Savarkar and he will not express any regret for his statement as he is a Gandhi and ‘Gandhis don’t apologise’.
Meanwhile, the 52-year-old Congress leader was granted bail by a Surat Sessions Court on Monday, April 3, in the case till the disposal of his appeal on a bond of Rs 15,000. The next hearing in the case will be held on April 13.