After renowned Bangladeshi actor Ferdous was caught in the TMC (Trinamool Congress) campaign controversy, another Bangladeshi actor, Gazi Abdun Noor was also allegedly caught campaigning for TMC leader, MP Saugata Roy, on Tuesday. Gazi plays the role of Raja Rajchandra in the hit serial, 'Rani Rashmoni' on Channel Zee 5, popular amongst audience both in India and Bangladesh. He was seen campaigning alongside TMC leader Madan Mitra.
According to Anandabazar, a leading Indian daily, BJP submitted a video to the commission, where Gazi Abdun Noor was seen waving to the onlookers from a vehicle, which was part of a campaign road show by MP Saugata Roy.
BJP leader Rahul Sinha expressed serious concern over the matter saying Bangladeshi actors are coming to India and are campaigning for TMC which is wrong because no foreign citizen can influence voters, as reported by ZEE NEWS. He also added that these actors are coming to India on either tourist or business visa but are indulging in political activity.
West Bengal BJP leaders Jay Prakash Majumdar and Sisir Bajoria on Tuesday met Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Ariz Aftab in Kolkata and demanded that Ferdous should be arrested.
"We understand that foreign nationals can't participate in electioneering process in India. When TMC is using Bangladeshi nationals for campaigning, they are breaking the rules. He should be arrested for breach of visa rules," Majumdar said.
According to a source at the election commission, there are no clear laws about foreigners not being allowed to campaign for politician parties, reports Anandabazaar. “We have let the commission in Delhi know, and will wait for their decision.”
Talking to Zee Media, TMC leader and Kolkata Mayor Firhad Hakim tried to downplay the matter saying BJP is deliberately raising this issue because they are sure of their defeat in the state.
The event was brought to light after Ferdous was first to be caught in the controversy. The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) of India, cancelled his business visa and he was made to leave the country. The MHA also told the Anandabazaar Potrika, that Ferdous was committing visa violations, as he was campaigning for TMC candidate Kanhaiyalal Agarwal. Kanhaiyalal later denied his involvement in hiring the actor in the Mamata Banerjee-led party's campaign. This came as a big shock for the entertainment industries, for both Bangladesh and Kolkata, where Ferdous is seen as a goodwill ambassador.
The event is now a huge topic for debate among the masses and between India's two major parties, BJP and Congress, as the leaders from the former party put forth allegations on Congress for 'condoning' visa violations for their campaign.