A police FIR was filed on Monday against Samajwadi Party (SP) leader Azam Khan for his derogatory comments purportedly against actor-turned-politician Jaya Prada, even as the sexist remarks drew political fire from various quarters.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Electoral Officer has also taken cognizance of the derogatory remarks and has sought a report on it. The National Commission for Women (NCW) has also sent a notice to Khan over the remark.
Addressing a rally in the presence of Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav, Azam Khan in a disparaging remark said, “I brought her (Jaya Prada) to Rampur. You are a witness that I did not allow anyone to touch her body. It took you 17 years to identify her real face but I got to know in 17 days that she wears khaki underwear.”
However, asserting that he did not name anyone, the SP leader later said that he would withdraw his candidature from the ongoing polls if proved guilty.
“I have said that people took time to know the real face in reference to a man who once said that he brought 150 rifles with him and if he saw Azam, he would shoot him dead. My leaders also did a mistake. Now, it has been revealed that he has an RSS pant on his body. Short is worn by men,” Khan told ANI on Sunday.
Akhilesh, meanwhile, has maintained silence over the snide remark by his party’s senior leader and has instead shared images of the same rally. Taking to his twitter account on Monday morning, Yadav shared pictures of him alongside Khan, in an apparent show of support for the Rampur legislator.
Jaya Prada, who is contesting from Rampur on BJP’s ticket, has earlier represented the constituency as a Samajwadi Party lawmaker.
Union minister Sushma Swaraj, drawing a comparison between mythological character Bhishma Pitahmah and Samajwadi Party (SP) founder Mulayam Singh Yadav, sought the patriacrch’s response on Khan’s sexist comment.
Referring to Draupadi’s cheer-haran (disrobing) – a scene from epic Mahabharata in which Pandavas lost a bet to their usurping cousins – Swaraj appealed Mulayam to not remain silent on the matter.
J-K chief minister Mehbooba Mufti on Monday said in Anantnag, Kashmir: “The Election Commission of India (ECI) is doing good work. It should also take strict action against the statement made by Azam Khan about Jaya Prada.”