: The Bharatiya Janata Party on Monday said the author of the book, which has drawn flak from opposition for comparing Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Maratha king Chhatrapati Shivaji, has withdrawn the publication, as the party sought to defuse the raging controversy over it.
Hailing Shivaji as 'incomparable', BJP leader and Union minister Prakash Javadekar said, 'The BJP has nothing to do with the book which was brought by Jai Bhagwan Goyal (author) in his personal capacity. He has also apologised for hurting sentiments of people in Maharashtra and outside. He has withdrawn the book. This should put the controversy to rest.'
'#ShivajiMaharaj was a great ruler and a legendary king who worked tirelessly for the welfare of the people. He is an inspiration even today after centuries. We regard him as incomparable with others,' he tweeted.
Goyal is a BJP member and the party's rivals in Maharashtra have latched onto the issue to corner it by holding protests and accusing it of insulting the legendary Maratha warrior.
The ruling Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party and Congress in Maharashtra have criticised the book, 'Aaj ke Shivaji: Narendra Modi', deprecating the 'insulting comparison' between Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and the PM.
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut demanded that it be banned and asked the warrior king's descendants to clarify their stand over the issue.
Goyal had earlier said that he only wanted to illustrate as to how Modi like Shivaji had done many things considered 'impossible' and was willing to apologise if his book has hurt sentiments.