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In the eye of the storm, Pragya asked to keep off road show

On a day Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he can't forgive her for terming Nathuram Godse a patriot, Pragya Singh Thakur was asked by the party to stay away from a road show on the last day of the Lok Sabha poll campaign Friday.

The Malegaon blast accused and BJP candidate from Bhopal Lok Sabha seat had reached Burhanpur to participate in the road show for party colleague Nand Kumar Chauhan, pitted against former Union minister and Congress candidate Arun Yadav in the Khandwa Lok Sabha constituency.

However, the party asked her to "keep off" from the public, after which she did not lead the road show in MP, a state BJP leader said.

As a result, the saffron-clad Thakur stayed put in her hotel room, the leader added.

Thakur was unwell and so did not take part in the road show, another state BJP leader said.

Modi Friday said he will never forgive Pragya Singh Thakur for insulting Mahatma Gandhi by calling his assassin Nathuram Godse a true patriot.

Modi said her comments were detrimental to society.

On Thursday, in response to a question over actor- turned-politician Kamal Haasan's remark that "free India's first extremist was a Hindu", Pragya had said, "Nathuram Godse was a deshbhakt (patriot), he is and will remain a deshbhakt. Those calling him an extremist should look at themselves. They will be given a befitting reply in this election."

Pragya later apologised for her comment and retracted the statement.

"It was my personal opinion remark. My intention was not to hurt anyones sentiments. If Ive hurt anyone I do apologise. What Gandhiji has done for the country cannot be forgotten. My statement has been twisted by the media," she said.

Earlier this month, the Election Commission had barred Pragya from campaigning for three days for violating the Model Code of Conduct by stirring up communal feelings.

The poll watchdog had said that the decision came in light of her comments against slain IPS officer Hemant Karkare and on the demolition of the Babri Masjid.