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Sushma Swaraj, Smriti Irani Hit Out at Naresh Agarwal for Sexist Jibe at Jaya Bachchan

The former Samajwadi Party leader, who jumped ship from the SP after being snubbed in favour of Bachchan for a Rajya Sabha ticket, termed the actor-politician a “Bollywood Dance Girl” while sitting alongside senior BJP leader and railway minister Piyush Goyal.

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Updated:March 13, 2018, 8:11 AM IST
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Sushma Swaraj, Smriti Irani Hit Out at Naresh Agarwal for Sexist Jibe at Jaya Bachchan
File photos of external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj (L) and Naresh Agarwal.
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New Delhi: Within hours of joining the BJP, Naresh Agarwal finds himself in trouble for a misogynist statement he made about Jaya Bachchan at a press conference held to welcome him into the saffron fold on Monday.

The former Samajwadi Party leader, who jumped ship from the SP after being snubbed in favour of Bachchan for a Rajya Sabha ticket, termed the actor-politician a “Bollywood Dance Girl” while sitting alongside senior BJP leader and railway minister Piyush Goyal.

“My ticket was denied and it was given to someone who dances in films. That is even more painful,” he told reporters in New Delhi.

Taking strong objection to his remarks, external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj rebuked him in a tweet meant to welcome his joining.

“Shri Naresh Agarwal has joined Bhartiya Janata Party. He is welcome. However, his comments regarding Jaya Bachhan ji are improper and unacceptable,” she wrote.




Union Minister Smriti Irani also condemned Agarwal's statement in a tweet late on Monday. "My case (against Sanjay Nirupam) is in the court of law for 5 years now. But let my battle not be an excuse to humiliate other women. In fact let it be a reminder for us that when a woman’s honour is challenged we stand as one in our condemnation irrespective of our politics," she wrote.

The remarks have also caused a furore on social media, with several people already calling for BJP to sack him.










Agarwal, a two-time Rajya Sabha MP and seven-time MLA, is not new to controversial remarks. He has often targeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi and said that a tea seller is not fit to lead the country.

Last month too, he had triggered a row by making remarks about the PM's caste. At a programme organised by traders in Lucknow, Agarwal had said, “Tell them to make laws in favour of the community (Business Community)... Amit Shah is from our community, but Modi is a 'Teli'.”

The casteist remarks had prompted a strong reaction from some members of the audience.Later, speaking to reporters, Agrawal in an apparent defence of his comments, said, “Every person has a caste, and there is nothing new in this. If any leader is not telling his caste, then public will tell his caste.”
| Edited by: Aakarshuk Sarna
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