Rajasthan: This woman BJP candidate demolished PM Modi’s ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’ in her campaign
Jaipur, Dec 3: Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the top-most leader of the ruling BJP, has stressed time and again on protecting India's daughters. The 'Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao' (save the girl, educate the girl) scheme, launched in 2015, has been a flagship one for his government.
However, it did not take long for a candidate from Modi's party in poll-bound Rajasthan to shatter the noble initiative his government at the Centre has taken.
Shobha Chouhan, the BJP candidate from Sojat Assembly constituency in the state's Pali district for the December 7 election, recently remarked that she would ensure that no action is taken against child marriages if she wins the polls. She made the controversial remark at a public rally at Sneh Sammelan in Peepaliya Kalan region.
"We have 'satta' [power] and 'sangathan' [state government] at our disposal. We won't let the police intervene in child marriages," Shobha Chouhan was heard saying in a video, reported India Today.
Shobha made the remark in response to the local Dewasi people's concern over facing police action for child marriage. The constituency's returning officer reportedly issued a notice to her for violating the election code of conduct.
The saffron party candidate faced a backlash from not only the Opposition parties but also from the common people who called it "sick", "criminal" and "regressing". Shobha is the wife of an IAS officer, said one Twitter user.
Here are some of the reactions to the incident:
India's time machine is going in the opposite direction.— cassandra nazareth (@cassynaz) December 2, 2018
Regressing into the dark ages.
Isn't child marriage a crime?@rajasthanpolice@MumbaiMirror@NSOOD6 @vmoorthynow@PMOIndia
Some action please.https://t.co/Z21Tyoybdy
Rajasthan #BJP candidate, Shobha Chauhan's promise of 'no hindrance' to child marriage if elected shows abject oversight by party & mockery of its campaign #betibachao, but the applause to Chauhan's words is a sad sign of our collective national failure. https://t.co/8jVhmjX70t— Tanvi Kulkarni (@kulkarnitanvi) December 2, 2018
Shobha Chauhan, BJP candidate from Rajasthan, promises that BJP will allow child marriages if elected.— Shama Mohamed (@drshamamohd) December 2, 2018
Chauhan is the wife of IAS officer Rajesh Chauhan.
From 'vikas' in 2014 to 'Bal Vivah' in 2018, how far the BJP has fallen!#RajasthanElections2018
Child marriage is punishable in India under the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006. A male adult marrying a child can be jailed up to years or slapped with a fine which may extend to Rs 1 lakh or may face both.