In his latest remarks, Raut lambasted those opposing the Bharat Ratna for Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, saying: “Those who oppose Veer Savarkar, they may be from any ideology or party, let them stay for just two days at the cell in Andaman cellular jail where Savarkar was lodged. Only then will they realise his sacrifice and his contribution to the nation.”
Raut’s statement came after former Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan opposed the Bharat Ratna for Savarkar.“Savarkar asked for pardon from the British. In this case, if the central government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi gives him Bharat Ratna, we (Congress) will oppose it. Savarkar’s life is controversial,” Chavan had said.
Earlier this month, controversy erupted over booklets brought by the Congress Seva Dal, which allegedly made some derogatory remarks related to Savarkar and Nathuram Godse, the killers of Mahatma Gandhi.
The Seva Dal booklets, Sav Veer Savarkar Kitne Veer and BJP RSS and BJP Kucha Tapasya and Janki were distributed at the training camp of Congress Frontal Organization in Bhopal, capital of Madhya Pradesh.
Allegedly extracting a booklet from Dominic Lapierre and Larry Collins’s book ‘Freedom at Midnight’, he claimed: “Before Nathuram Godse adopted celibacy, he made just one mention of his physical relationship. Adopting celibacy Godse had only physical relations before. He had homosexual relationships with his political mentor, Veer Savarkar. ”
The booklet put the Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena-Congress-Nationalist Congress Party alliance – the Maha Vikas Aghadi government – to shame.
At that time, Shiv Sena’s Sanjay Raut had targeted the Congress saying: “Veer Savarkar was a great man and will be great. But a section keeps talking against him. It shows dirt in his mind.”