FIR filed against Azam Khan for an offensive statement against Jaya Prada

NEW DELHI: An FIR was registered against Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan on Tuesday for his objectionable remarks against BJP leader Jaya Prada who is fighting the Lok Sabha election against him from Uttar Pradesh’s Rampur constituency.

UP Police booked Azam Khan under IPC Section 509 for insulting the modesty of a woman.

After his comments deriding Jaya Prada, Azam Khan on Tuesday stoked another controversy when he ridiculed the IAS officers. “Don’t be afraid of collectors, will get them to clean Mayawati’s footwear,” he said.

The BJP MP lashed out at Khan, saying that the SP leader shouldn’t be allowed to contest the elections.

“He shouldn’t be allowed to contest elections. Because if this man wins, what will happen to democracy? There’ll be no place for women in society. Where will we go? Should I die, then you’ll be satisfied? You think that I’ll get scared and leave Rampur? But I won’t leave,” she said.

“It isn’t new for me, you might remember that I was a candidate from his party in 2009 when no one supported me after he made comments against me. I’m a woman and I can’t even repeat what he said. I don’t know what I did to him that he is saying such things,” she added.

The SP leader’s controversial statement, during an address to a gathering in Rampur, stoked controversy with BJP asking the Election Commission to take action against him. Though the SP leader did not directly made a reference to Prada, the BJP and National Women Commission interpreted that Khan was referring to the BJP leader.

BJP leader Smriti Irani slammed the Samajwadi Party leadership for being a mute spectator. “Derogatory comments were being made on a woman and SP leaders were sitting silently. I urge them that politics has its own place and respect for women in India has its own,” Irani said.

Congress leader and former Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit demanded an apology from Khan. “This is highly condemnable, he owes an apology to women immediately.Its unacceptable, action should be taken against him,” she was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

National Commission of Women chairperson Rekha Sharma said that the SP leader has a history of making derogatory remarks against women and it is high time that action should be initiated against him. She also asked the Election Commission to take “strict” action against him. The women’s rights organisation also sent a notice to Khan for his remark.

“He’s always talking dirty about women and in this election it is the second remark he gave against woman politician. NCW has taken suo-motu cognizance and we’re sending him a notice,” she said.

“We are also writing to EC to take strict action against him because he has to learn this lesson now. It’s high time, he has to stop this. Women are not sex objects. I think, women voters should vote against such kind of people who are treating women in such way,” she added.

On Monday, construing Khan’s remark as having made against Jaya Prada, BJP’s state unit spokesperson Chandramohan told PTI, “It’s a very obnoxious and shameful remark.”

“The level of politics cannot fall lower than this,” said the BJP spokesperson.

The BJP also asked BSP supremo Mayawati to make her stand clear on “this indecent remark against Jaya Prada.”

Referring to Mulayam Singh Yadav as the ‘Pitamah’ of Samajwadi Party, senior BJP leader and external affair minister Sushma Swarak urged the Samajwadi Party founder to speak up against Khan.

However, Khan dismissed the allegations, saying that he did not make any objectionable remarks against Prada.

Asserting that he did not name anyone, the Samajwadi Party leader told that he would withdraw his candidature from the ongoing polls if proved guilty.

“I have said that people took time to know real face in reference to a man once said that he brought 150 rifles with him and if he sees Azam, he would have shot 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.

“I was a nine-time MLA from Rampur and been a minister. I know what to say. “If anyone proves that I have named anyone and insulted anyone by name. If it is proved, I will step back from the elections,” he added.

(This story originally appeared on Times of India)

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