A video of BJP leader Hemlata Chauhan purportedly telling a migrant Congress leader from Uttar Pradesh to “go back to his own state” after he raised the issue of water problem in Navsari during a live television has gone viral on social media. Based on viral video, a Surat-based social activist has registered a complaint with the Navsari election branch against Chauhan.
In the video, Gangadhar Shukla, Leader of Opposition of Vejalpore Nagar Palika in Navsari district who hails from Uttar Pradesh, when asked by the host of the news channel is seen saying in Hindi, “Yeh Jumlabazi feku sarkar hein. Aap inshe punchhe, inhone Navsari district Lok Sabha ke ander janta ko peene ka pani de sake aap, vikas ke naam par. Iske alava, jo grant aayi hain Vejalpore Nagar Palika, Navsari aur Surat ke liye, inki grants vikas ke naam par vapas jaa rahi hein.” (This is a government of lies. You ask them, whether they have provided drinking water to people of Navsari Lok Sabha constituency, in the name of development. Apart from this, all the grants that are coming to Navsari, Surat and Vejalpore nagarpalika are being returned to the government.)
Responding to him, Chauhan, who is the former president of Navsari municipality, said in Gujarati, “Whenever there is a debate, this brother speaks of Vejalpore water issues. He is actually from outside (Gujarat). If he has such a big issue with water supply, he should leave Navsari and go back to his own state. If there was actually a problem of water, this brother would not be seated here. He has come from outside, so he wants to criticise Navsari on one issue or another”.
Shukla retorted, “I have been staying in Navsari district for a very long time, and I’m an active member of the Congress party. I am shocked to hear Hemlata Chauhan’s remarks. It is unconstitutional. If I am migrant (parprantiya), then the BJP candidate for Navsari Lok Sabha is a Maharashtrian native, and he should also go back to his native place instead of contesting election from here. In the debate, I have raised the issue the people of Navsari face. No development work is been done in Navsari.
As the video of the exchange went viral on social media, the BJP leader defended her statement, saying she has no regrets. “I have seen Shukla raising the same issue on each and every debate show. So, I have said that he should go back to his native place. I have no regrets of what I said in the live debate show,” Chauhan told The Indian Express.
Meanwhile, sources in the Navsari election department said that officials have started collecting the footage of the debate.