New Delhi: The Election Commission on Wednesday barred Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s Lok Sabha candidate from Bhopal Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur from campaigning for 72 hours for her remarks on former ATS chief Hemant Karkare and Babri mosque demolition. The panel “strongly condemned” her remarks” and “warned her “not to repeat the misconduct in future”.

Notably, the ban would come into force from 6.00 AM, May 2 (Thursday).

The EC said though Pragya had apologised for her statement against the slain IPS officer, it found the statement to be “unwarranted”.

Pragya had said Karkare was killed in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack because of her “curse” as he “tortured” her when he probed the Malegaon blast case as chief of the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS). The BJP leader had said, “Maine kaha tera (Mumbai ATS chief late Hemant Karkare) sarvanash hoga. Theek sava mahine mein sutak lagta hai. Jis din main gayi thi us din iske sutak lag gaya tha.Aur theek sava mahine mein jis din atankwadiyon ne isko maara, us din uska anth hua.” (Hemant Karkare falsely implicated me in Malegaon blasts and treated me very badly. I told him your entire clan will be erased. He died because of his karma,” Sadhvi said.)

She also had said that she was “proud” of her participation in the demolition of the Babri mosque at Ayodhya in 1992. In her television interaction, Thakur had said, “Ram Mandir hum banayenge aur bhavya banayenge, hum todne gaye the dhancha, maine chadhkar toda tha dhancha, iss par mujhe bhayankar garv hai. Mujhe Ishwar ne shakti di thi humne desh ka kalank mitaya hai (A grand Ram temple will be built. I had gone to demolish the structure and had climbed atop it to break the structure. I am tremendously proud of it. God gave me strength to wipe off a blot on this country).”