New Delhi: Father of a Malegaon blast victim on Thursday filed a plea against Sadhvi Pragya Thakur after she was declared BJP’s candidate from Bhopal. The plea has questioned her candidature before the National Investigation Agency (NIA) court citing her health which was one of the reasons in her bail application.

Amidst the ensuing Lok Sabha elections 2019, the BJP on Wednesday fielded Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, an accused in Malegaon case, from Bhopal seat, pitting her directly against Congress heavyweight and former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Digvijaya Singh who is also contesting from the same seat.

Tehseen Poonawalla also filed a complaint with the Election Commission against the candidature of Pragya Singh Thakur and requested it “to debar her from contesting elections as she is a terror accused”.

Thakur, who is out on bail, had joined the BJP only hours before her name was announced as its candidate, underscoring the saffron party’s attempt to bring the Hindutva plank at the centre stage of polls in the high profile constituency, which has been its bastion for many elections. An NIA court had dropped charges against her under the stringent MCOCA but she and other co-accused are still facing other charges in the Malegaon case.

The polling for Bhopal will take place on May 12. The results will come out on May 23.

The BJP Thursday defended its decision to field Sadhvi Pragya from the Lok Sabha seat, calling it as a fight against the Congress’ “conspiracy” to defame Hindu religion by linking it to terrorism. “We are contesting this election in Bhopal as a fight against the Congress conspiracy to insult Hindu religion by linking it to terrorism. Digvijaya Singh was the face of this conspiracy,” spokesperson G V L Narasimha Rao told reporters. Singh is the Congress candidate from the seat. Rao claimed that the conspiracy has been “exposed”, claiming that Thakur has been discharged in some cases. He also mentioned the arrest of Hindutva activist Swami Aseemanand and his recent acquittal to attack the opposition party.

BJP leader Ram Madhav also came to Pragya’s defence, he said, “Accusation of saffron terror, Hindu terror was a creation of UPA. No such thing existed or exists now. Some people were wrongfully put in jail. Nobody can question us on the constitutional validity of putting up a candidate who has just allegations against her.”