Tej Pratap supports Padukone; BJP hits back

Tej Pratap supports Padukone; BJP hits back

PTI file photo

RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav's elder son Tej Pratap on Saturday came out in support of actor Deepika Padukone and her movie 'Chhapaak' in which she has essayed the role of an acid attack survivor.

The film is facing a boycott call from sympathisers of the BJP-led NDA government at Centre in the wake of Padukone's recent visit to the JNU following violence in the campus.

The RJD leader's tweet in favour of the actor and her film, however, drew instant ridicule from Bihar BJP which was quick to point out the alleged ill-treatment suffered by the mercurial leader's estranged wife, Aishwarya Roy.

Yadav, who takes to the micro-blogging site far less frequently than his father, mother Rabri Devi, eldest sister Misa Bharti or younger brother Tejashwi Yadav, offered his take in typical Bihari slang.

"Why is Chhapaak coming like a 'dhapaak' (blow) to those who are occupying seats of power? These are the same people who swear by women's empowerment and safety and coin slogans like 'Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao'. You are an inspiration, @deepikapadukone ji," Tej Pratap tweeted.

Padukone is being trolled ever since she visited the JNU campus and stood beside students protesting the recent assault by masked attackers allegedly supporting RSS-affiliate ABVP.

The hashtag #boycottchhapaak has been trending on Twitter as Padukone's gesture was seen as supportive of those opposed to the BJP.

'Chapaak' hit the screens on Friday.

Yadav's averment came a day after his party colleague and former state culture minister Shiv Chandra Ram urged the Nitish Kumar government to declare the film tax-free.

State BJP spokesperson Nikhil Anand responded by issuing a strongly-worded statement, condemning as "ridiculous, bordering on shamelessness" the "gyaan" (wisdom) that Yadav sought to offer in his tweet.

"His parents may have named him Tej (bright) but he would do well to stop taking it literally and, in view of his actions, start calling himself 'chirkut' (worthless).

"He is not just a member of the state Assembly but has been a minister as well. It behoved him to treat women with respect. But the way he has treated 'samaj ki beti' (daughter of the community) is disgraceful. If he is left with an iota of shame, he should publicly fall at the feet of Aishwarya Roy and seek her apology," Anand said.

Yadav had married Roy, daughter of a sitting RJD MLA and granddaughter of a former Bihar chief minister, in May 2018. He filed a petition seeking divorce barely six months after his marriage.

Aishwarya Roy chose to stay with Rabri Devi in a bid to save her failing marriage.

However, things reached a flash-point in December last year when Roy sat outside Rabri Devi's house, flanked by father Chandrika Roy and other family members, tearfully accusing her mother-in-law of having dragged her by the hair and driven her out of the bungalow.

Roy subsequently lodged an FIR at a police station accusing Rabri Devi, her husband and Misa Bharti of domestic violence.

Former chief minister Rabri Devi responded with a police complaint alleging that she faced threat to her life from her daughter-in-law, Aishwarya Roy.

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