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Minister’s ‘obscene’ video clip remark leaves BJP red-faced

Girish Bapat

Pune:  A remark about watching “video clips at night” by Maharashtra minister Girish Bapat during a students convention here has left the BJP red-faced and given fodder to the party’s detractors.

A police complaint has also been filed over the alleged “obscene” remark by the Minister. “We also watch those video clips which you see on your mobiles at night. Do not think we have turned old. We are still young at heart,” Bapat, a senior BJP functionary and Food and Civil Supplies minister, said at the convention in the city on Friday night.

However, as the video of minister’s remark went viral, ally Shiv Sena and NCP condemned it. NCP activists even staged a silent demonstration in front of Bapat’s residence yesterday after the president of its city unit Vandana Chavan described the comment as “uncultured and irresponsible”.

Shiv Sena leader Neelam Gorhe, too, strongly criticised Bapat’s comment saying “this is a tragedy of Pune which is regarded as cultural capital.”

“Bapat is MLA from Pune and the city’s guardian minister. His utterance is improper and disappointing,” she said, adding that BJP leadership should take note of this.

In an attempt to play down the controversy, Bapat told reporters, “It was a comment made in a lighter vein. It had no obscene connotation. However, I could have avoided it.”

Meanwhile, a local law student, Yogesh Kamte, today said that he has filed a complaint against Bapat under section 294 of IPC for his alleged “obscene” remark at a public place. However, the police have not admitted the complaint so far.

“I had myself gone to attend the convention along with female students in my class and I felt extremely embarrassed to hear the minister’s comment,” Kamte told PTI today.

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