Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray Tuesday said Pakistan would not have been created if Hindutva ideologue Veer Savarkar had been the country’s prime minister during partition. Speaking in Mumbai, he reiterated his demand that Savarkar should be awarded the Bharat Ratna.
“Savarkar must be awarded the Bharat Ratna. We don’t deny the work done by Gandhi and Nehru, but the country saw more than two families being born on the political scene,” Thackeray was quoted as saying by PTI. “I’d have called Nehru as Veer (brave) if he had survived jail for 14 minutes against Savarkar who stayed in prison for 14 long years.”
Thackeray made the remark during the launch of the biography ‘Savarkar: Echoes From A Forgotten Past’, written by Vikram Sampath.
The Sena chief also reportedly took a jibe at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who has, in the past, criticised Hindutva icons, including Savarkar. Thackeray said Gandhi should be given a copy of the book.
Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, popularly known as Veer Savarkar was born in Nashik in 1883. Savarkar was a Hindu Mahasabha leader and is often credited with coining the term and philosophy of ‘Hindutva’. He was imprisoned by the British in Andaman’s Cellular Jail from 1910 to 1921. He died in 1966 at the age of 82.
(Inputs from PTI)