Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan launched into a tirade on "dance bars" and "disrespectable people" during his first public speech in Rampur after the Lok Sabha elections on Sunday. He, however, stopped short of naming anybody.
"We have not opened a dance bar here..." news agency PTI quoted Mr Khan as saying. "People know whom I am referring to. How can a world that classifies this term as respectable even progress or keep its head held high? Will those who drag down the respectable tell us what to do? They believe themselves to be gods and goddesses."
Mr Khan had often picked on actor-turned-politician Jaya Prada, who ditched the Samajwadi Party for the BJP, while campaigning for the Rampur Lok Sabha constituency. At one time, he even seemed to suggest that she wears "khaki underwear" -- a colour associated with the RSS.
Mr Khan's son, Abdullah Azam Khan, also alluded to Jaya Prada's dancing skills to target her at the time. "We want Ali and we want Bajrang Bali, but we don't want Anarkali," he said, without specifically naming her.
The Election Commission responded by banning the senior Samajwadi Party leader from campaigning for a period of 72 hours. A complaint was also filed against Jaya Prada for making "objectionable comments" against Mr Khan and Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati.
However, Mr Khan's rivalry with the former actress did not end with the polls. Earlier this month, the Allahabad High Court dismissed a petition filed by Jaya Prada to seek Mr Khan's disqualification from the Lok Sabha for "holding an office of profit" as the Chancellor of Jauhar University.
"You saw what the result was," he said on Sunday, referring to his victory in Rampur. "Just look at how much money was spent just to defeat me. They said they would be humiliated if Azam Khan emerges victorious."
According to news agency ANI, a complaint has been filed against Mr Khan and 10 others in connection with the remarks.
The Samajwadi Party leader had defeated Jaya Prada by a margin of over 1.09 lakh votes to claim the Rampur constituency in the Lok Sabha elections. The Congress came a distant third.
(With inputs from Agencies)
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