PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti, who remains under detention in Srinagar, on Thursday took issue with the Maharashtra BJP unit's proposal to lobby for a Bharat Ratna for Vinayak Damodar Savarkar (popularly known as Veer Savarkar). Savarkar is considered one of the foremost ideologues of Hindutva.
Mehbooba has been under detention since August 5 after the Narendra Modi government abrogated provisions of Article 370. Since September 20, her Twitter handle has been operated by her daughter Iltija Mufti.
On Thursday, the Twitter handle of Mehbooba Mufti posted, “Bharat Ratna for a man who justified rape as a weapon of war. You know a country needs to reset its moral compass when the likes of Savarkar are feted whereas a great man like Gandhiji is disrespected”.
In the tweet from Mehbooba was a link to an article on Scroll.in that claimed Savarkar had justified the use of rape in war. The Scroll.in article contains references to a passage from Six Glorious Epochs of Indian History, a book written by Savarkar.
The passage has Savarkar commenting, "To carry away the women of others and to ravish them is itself the supreme religious duty of the Rakshasas." The Scroll.in article also contains a quote from Dhananjay Keer, who had written a biography on Savarkar. Keer argued, "He (Savarkar) said that abduction and rape of Indian women by the inhuman acts of Pakistan can only be stopped if the similar act was done with them too".
Mehbooba has been bitterly critical of the BJP government's actions since the abrogation of Article 370. Soon after the decision on August 5, Mehbooba tweeted, “They (BJP government) want to change demography of the only Muslim majority state in India, dis-empower Muslims to the extent where they become second class citizens in their own state...”