Chouhan draws criticism, ridicule over flood picture

Chouhan draws criticism, ridicule over flood picture

Chouhan draws criticism, ridicule over flood picture

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has drawn flak for a photograph showing him being lifted by security personnel to cross a swollen nullah in Panna district to meet flood-hit people.

The picture, which has gone viral on the Internet with netizens taking potshots at the BJP leader, was released on Sunday by the state public relations department after his visit to the rain-ravaged district but was later withdrawn.

Madhya Pradesh Congress chief Arun Yadav said Chouhan’s “photo-stunt” for cheap publicity had backfired.

“Chouhan in a bid to garner cheap publicity has indulged in this photo stunt. Instead of mitigating the problems of flood-hit people in Panna and other parts, the chief minister has himself become a problem for people (security personnel),” Congress leader Arun Yadav said.

He said that the “real face” of the chief minister has been exposed in the photo. “Now people know him well. We seek his resignation over the photo, depicting his feudal mindset,” the Congress leader said.

On social media, social activist Ajay Dubey posted the photo with a caption, “I am a prince”. Dubey took a dig at Chouhan saying the picture has revived memories of feudalism.

When a senior officer of state public relations department was asked about the photo release, he said the picture was released by their Panna office to media houses and not by the Bhopal office.

However, it was withdrawn on Sunday evening itself, he added.
Meanwhile, defending Chouhan, Principal Secretary S K Mishra said the chief minister was having ‘Z’ security cover prompting his security personnel to lift him to ensure that any poisonous creature in the water did not bite him.

“Nothing should be read into it,” Mishra said.
“Chouhan, in fact, risked his life to cross the swollen nullah. He is too sensitive to people’s problems. He is meeting people affected by flood round-the-clock. We should appreciate his concern, sensitivity to the people rather than taking it the other way round,” Mishra said.

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