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Khaki underwear jibe: Azam making such remarks to divert attention from real issues, says Noor Bano

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: April 18, 2019  | 18:43 IST

By Asim Kamal Rampur (UP), Apr 18 (PTI) Condemning SP leader Azam Khan's "khaki underwear" jibe against BJP candidate from Rampur Jaya Prada, Congress leader Begum Noor Bano says that he wants to divert people's attention from real issues by making such remarks. The erstwhile Rampur royal also hit out at the Samajwadi Party (SP) for not condemning Khan's remarks, saying she is pained by the party's silence. "I want to ask SP is it okay for a political person to disrespect a woman? The party is not answering on this issue. And the party, by staying mum, shows that they want this to happen," said Noor Bano, a two-time MP from here. "They (SP) talk of Muslims and are getting women disrespected every time. I am pained by the silence of the party. It is something that every woman should condemn," she told PTI. Noor Bano alleged that there has been no development despite Khan making so many promises. Khan always tries to divert from real matters and in the past, he has raised Hindu-Muslim issues for this purpose, she claimed. "Now he wants to come to Parliament. He keeps making comments about Jaya Prada so that people's mind is diverted and people get into that debate," said Noor Bano, who has also been a member of the Congress Working Committee in the past. "Khan wants to divert people from real issues by making such comments," the 79-year-old leader said, adding he doesn't want the issues of development to be discussed, Noor Bano claimed. Asked if the political discourse had hit an all-time low with Khan's statement, Noor Bano said that after this remark, people have started to wonder is this the agenda of the SP that women are disrespected and families maligned. "Is Rampur being targeted, that development should not take place here? Our family has done a lot for the development of Rampur for the last several years. He (Khan) does not want to answer to the people on development," she said. On whether the election has become about the dignity of women, she said, "Of course it has... Specifically, he has targeted a woman. Before this, it was any strong candidate opposing him." He thinks that with this kind of a discourse he will demoralise people, but instead, people are now fed up of it, Noor Bano said. "No woman in Rampur likes what has been said about her. Women feel vulnerable, they need respect in society. Every woman should be treated with respect," she said. The Congress this time decided not to field a candidate from the Nawab family and instead fielded Sanjay Kapoor, who was Bilaspur MLA from 2012 to 2017, one of the five Assembly segments of the Rampur Lok Sabha constituency. However, all members of the Nawab family have thrown their weight behind Kapoor and are actively campaigning for him. Talking about her party, Noor Bano said Khan is also trying to take attention away from the Congress. "Initially, he did not feel threatened by the Congress. He did not expect our family to stand up and give a fight. the Congress has shown its fight and its own strength. It is a party which is respected by one and all and it fights on issues," she said. "The people have seen the BJP, they have seen other parties. The Congress is the only alternative to get the country back in order," she said. Rampur was a Congress stronghold from 1952 to 1989 before the BJP won it for the first time in 1991. The Congress, however, managed to wrest it back in 1996 by fielding Noor Bano. In 1998, BJP's Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi won the seat. The following year, Noor Bano got it back for the Congress again. The SP made its entry in Rampur in 2004, fielding Jaya Prada who defeated Noor Bano by a big margin. PTI ASK AAR

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