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Lok Sabha Elections 2024: Akhilesh defends Khurshid's niece booked over 'vote jehad' remark

Alam, who is also the niece of Congress leader Salman Khurshid, had made an appeal for 'vote jehad', terming it as necessary in the current situation for the minority community to drive away the BJP government.
Last Updated : 01 May 2024, 14:40 IST
Last Updated : 01 May 2024, 14:40 IST

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Lucknow: Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav on Wednesday defended his party leader Maria Alam, booked for her 'vote jehad' remark, saying that her intention was to ask people to vote in large numbers.

Seeking votes on Monday for INDIA bloc candidate Naval Kishore Shakya from Farrukhabad seat, Alam, who is also the niece of Congress leader Salman Khurshid, had made an appeal for 'vote jehad', terming it as necessary in the current situation for the minority community to drive away the BJP government.

The Uttar Pradesh Police on Tuesday booked Khurshid, who was present in the poll meeting, and Alam for her call for a 'vote jehad'.

Replying to a question on the controversy, SP chief Yadav said, "Sometimes powerful words are used to enthuse people to vote in elections. The meaning of it (Alam's call), I think, was not for which action has been initiated. The intention was that votes polled in maximum numbers, that all people cast their votes."

He was talking to reporters after addressing a poll meeting in Etawah district.

Alam, while addressing the election meeting in Kaimganj, had said, "Together do vote jehad — with intelligence, without being sentimental and with silence. As we can only vote jehad to drive away this Sanghi government."

Stressing that it was time to join hands, Alam had said otherwise this 'Sanghi government will succeed in wiping out our existence'.

A video of Alam's statement has also gone viral on social media.

Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya said seeing people showering votes on lotus (BJP's symbol), opposition leaders were making such objectionable comments out of frustration.

He said proper action should be initiated after a probe into Alam's remarks.

A case was registered against Alam for violating the provisions of the IPC and the Representation of People Act following a complaint by the Flying Squad and Surveillance Team, police had earlier said, and added that a case was also filed against Khurshid, who was the chief guest at the election meeting in Kaimganj.

The case was registered under sections 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant), 295A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) of the IPC and section 125 (promoting enmity between classes in connection with election) of the Representation of People Act, police had said.

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Published 01 May 2024, 14:40 IST

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