Raut asks voters not to fall for ‘affectionate gestures’ made by BJP’s Navneet Rana

The Asian Age.  | bhagwan parab

India, Politics

Raut asked the Sena UBT workers to ensure the defeat of Rana in Amravati

Sanjay Raut. (PTI)

Mumbai: Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Sanjay Raut on Thursday courted a controversy with his sexist remarks against BJP candidate Navneet Rana from Amravati constituency in Maharashtra by calling her ‘naachi’ (negative connotation for dancer).

“She is a dancer, an actor on the screen who will call you... will make some affectionate gestures towards you, but do not fall for that trap. The Lok Sabha election is a contest not against a dancer or ‘Babli’ (a con character in a Hindi film) but a fight between Maharashtra and Modi,” Raut said.

The Sena UBT Rajya Sabha MP made the controversial comments while addressing a campaign rally in Amaravati in support of Congress candidate Balwant Wankhede, who is pitted against Rana in the Lok Sabha polls. The Uddhav Thackeray-led party is an ally of the Congress.

Raut asked the Sena UBT workers to ensure the defeat of Rana in Amravati. “It is the primary and moral responsibility of every Shivsainik to defeat a woman, who tried to challenge the Matoshree (residence of Uddhav Thackeray in Mumbai) and used foul language for Hindu religion. She had tried to enter Matoshree by force (during a Hanuman Chalisa agitation in 2022),” he added.

Rana, an actor-turned-politician, was elected from Amravati as an independent in 2019 and she is now contesting from the same constituency on a BJP ticket.

Legislator Manisha Kayande from the Eknath Shinde-led Sena slammed Raut for his comments and urged the Election Commission to ban him from taking further part in the election campaign, on the lines of Congress leader Randeep Surjewala, who had used alleged insulting words against BJP MP Hema Malini.

Saying that Raut’s comments have exposed his hatred towards women, she demanded that the EC should ban Raut from addressing rallies during the campaign and he should not be allowed to give any speeches or interviews to media during the entire campaign period.

Two days ago, the EC barred Surjewala from campaigning for 48 hours over his alleged derogatory remarks against Hema Malini.