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‘Don’t eat if your parents don’t vote for me’ – This is what a Maharashtra politician told school children – India News

An MLA of the Eknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena has courted controversy after he was seen in an alleged video asking children not to eat for two days if their parents didn’t vote for him.

Kalamnuri MLA Santosh Bangar’s remarks came less than a week after the Election Commission issued directives against the use of children in poll-related activities.

In a purported video, Bangar can be seen saying school children in Marathi, “If your parents don’t vote for me in the next election, don’t eat for two days.” He was visiting a zilla parishad school in Hingoli district.

Bangar is seen telling the puzzled students, all less than 10 years old, that if their parents question their refusal to eat, they should reply, “Vote for Santosh Bangar, only then will we eat.”

The controversial MLA then asked the children to repeat and recite what they would say in front of their parents about whom to vote for in the upcoming elections.

Bangar’s remarks have prompted leaders from the Congress and the Sharad Pawar-led NCP to seek action against him.

NCP-SP spokesperson Clyde Crasto said his remarks go against the directive of the ECI, and demanded strict action against him without “any prejudice”.

“He is a habitual offender and goes scot-free as he is an ally of the BJP,” he said.

Congress leader Vijay Wadettiwar wondered if the state education minister was sleeping when an MLA of his party was making such remarks to school children.

Santosh Bangar’s past controversies

Previously, Bangar’s statements have also sparked controversy. He had earlier said that he would hang himself if Narendra Modi did not return as Prime Minister after the Lok Sabha elections.

He was booked by the Kalamnuri police in August last year for allegedly brandishing a sword during a festive rally. A year earlier, a video which allegedly showed him slapping a catering manager of a midday meal programme for labourers went viral.

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