Indian Elections Rocked by Sex Scandal Involving Modi Ally

Indian Elections Rocked by Sex Scandal Involving Modi Ally
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The Facts

  • Indian parliamentarian Prajwal Revanna of the Janata Dal Secular (JDS) party reportedly fled the country on Saturday, after videos that allegedly show him sexually assaulting multiple women circulated on April 26.

  • JDS is reportedly set to suspend Revanna, its candidate for the Hassan district in Karnataka state, which voted in the ongoing Indian election on April 26.

The Spin

Narrative A

Allegations of sexual harassment against JD(S) leaders HD Revanna and Prajwal Revanna during the Karnataka election campaign have caused immense political embarrassment. Prime Minister Modi may have criticized the Congress government amidst these accusations, but the case has heightened political tensions and done significant damage to the reputation of top politicians in the middle of this election cycle.

Narrative B

Prime Minister Narendra Modi's BJP did not select Revanna as a candidate, so the responsibility does not lie with the national party. Congress is opportunistically politicizing the issue of an individual's criminal behavior. The JDS has announced the suspension of Revanna from the party, while also emphasizing the separation of Modi and BJP from the serious allegations that have been made.

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