NCW urges Election Commission to act against Azam Khan for sexism

The National Commission for Women (NCW) on Monday issued a notice to Samajwadi Party candidate Azam Khan for his "extremely offensive, unethical" remarks against his BJP rival and actor-turned-politician Jaya Prada.

NCW urges Election Commission to act against Azam Khan for sexism
Azam Khan

The National Commission for Women (NCW) on Monday urged the Election Commission (EC) to take "strong and appropriate" action against Samajwadi Party's (SP) Azam Khan for his sexist and below-the-belt "khaki" comments on BJP rival Jaya Prada.

It also said that the comments are a violation of the Election Commission's model code of conduct (MCC).

Bringing Khan's remarks to the notice of the Election Commission in a letter, the NCW said that the Samajwadi Party leader made "sexist and below-the-belt ‘khaki' comments on Jaya Prada, by saying that she will enthral the voters with her ghungaroos and thumkas".

"Mr. Khan also circulated her morphed obscene pictures in the constituency, which amounts to crime under Section 509 and 354 of IPC (Indian Penal Code)," said the letter signed by NCW chief Rekha Sharma.

In the letter, the women's rights body also said that Khan's speech and behaviour amounts to violation of the MCC

It quoted Election Commission's regulations: "No party or candidate shall include in any activity which may aggravate existing differences or create mutual hatred or cause tension between different castes and communities, religious or linguistic.

"Criticism of other political parties, when made, shall be confined to their policies and programme, past record and work. Parties and Candidates shall refrain from criticism of all aspects of private life, not connected with the public activities of the leaders or workers of other parties. Criticism of other parties or their workers based on unverified allegations or distortion shall be avoided."

Khan, who is contesting the ongoing Lok Sabha polls from Uttar Pradesh's Rampur constituency, had said during a rally on Sunday that he "realised in 17 days that the underwear beneath is of the khaki colour", while hinting at Jaya Prada, an actor-turned-politician and a two-time Member of Parliament (MP) from Rampur.

Videos, in which Khan is seen making the speeches, are doing rounds on social media and inviting strong reactions from across the country.

The SP leader later claimed that he never named Jaya Prada

Earlier on Monday, the Commission had issued a notice to Azam Khan for his "extremely offensive, unethical" remarks and also asked the politician to provide a satisfactory explanation to it.

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