Minor girl, her father defend singer Papon
The minor girl, who was kissed by singer Papon, said the Assamese singer and judge of the reality show didn't do anything with the wrong intention. 'The House of The Voice India Kids' has released a video in which the girl and her parents have spoken about the controversy.
The minor girl says, "He kissed me like he would kiss his own child. My mother and my father also kiss me lovingly so there is nothing wrong about it."
Also, her father said that Papon is a father figure to his daughter and that there was nothing objectionable in the video that has come under the scanner.
"Papon sir is a mentor and a father figure to my daughter and has always encouraged her to pursue her dreams. He doesn't differentiate amongst the children who are here and gives them equal guidance on pursuing their dreams. What you saw in the video is not intentional. It was just a moment of affection that is being portrayed otherwise. I would request and urge the media to not pursue this further," he told Republic TV in a statement.
Maharashtra government on Saturday took cognizance of the incident involving Papon Mahanta, allegedly 'inappropriately kissing a minor girl'. Minister of State for Women and Child welfare Vidya Thakur directed Mumbai Commissioner of Police to investigate the incident.
Refuting a complaint filed against him, Papon has stated that he kissed a minor contestant on a reality show out of affection and it was not a sexual assault. The singer, however, says that he was only showing his "affection" to the 11-year-old contestant he is mentoring. "I am very painfully conscious of the accusations that have been made against me in the last few days. Anyone who knows me would be aware that I am an extremely affectionate and expressive person. That is the way I have been brought up and that's how I have always been with people close to me or people I care about," Papon said in a statement.