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    Bollywood actor and India's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate Sunny Deol greets people during an election campaign road show at Dinanagar in northern state of Punjab, India, Thursday, May 2, 2019

    Actor Turned MP Faces Backlash for Appointing ‘Representative’ to Look After Constituency

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    Sunny Deol the veteran Bollywood actor and first-time Member of Parliament from India’s ruling BJP, has shocked and amused netizens and constituents alike, by appointing a representative to do his job in his Punjab Constituency, due to his ‘busy’ Bollywood schedule.

    New Delhi (Sputnik) - Indian film star-turned-politician Sunny Deol has created a controversy and or some good gossip material by appointing a ‘representative’ to work on his behalf, addressing voter issues in his parliamentary constituency, in the Indian state of Punjab.

    The star recently won in the Gurdaspur area, near the India-Pakistan border.

    On Monday, Sunny Deol notified media that he had appointed Gurpreet Singh Palheri, from the state’s Palheri Village, as his representative to fulfil his responsibilities while he is away in Mumbai.

    ​But the decision perhaps did not go down too well among a lot of Twitter users. They slammed the actor, who earned immense popularity with his blockbuster India-Pakistan war movies like 
    “Gadar: Ek Prem Katha”, “Border” and social evil-based movies like “Damini”.

    Some netizens wanted to know if voters had voted for him to be their leader, or for his ‘representative’.

    ​Sunny’s announcement also evoked backlash from the opposition Congress party which expressed scepticism about the Bollywood star’s inexperience in politics during the election campaign.

    Punjab state Congress legislator Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa slammed Deol, saying people of the constituency had voted for Deol and not his representative.  “How can an MP appoint his representative? Voters have elected Sunny Deol as an MP, not his representative," Randhawa was quoted as saying by an Indian news agency.

    Deol also received some support from people who suggested that his “poorly framed” statements were misconstrued. He only intended to appoint a personal assistant (PA) to help people in his absence.

    ​Some fans supported the actor, saying that it is good that he accepts his naivety in politics, and that it was for the better that he had appointed an experienced representative, adding that he would be present on occasions whenever it was necessary.

    ​Bollywood’s prominent Deol acting family, of which Sunny is a member, is not new to Indian politics. Sunny’s father the erstwhile superstar Dharmendra was a former BJP MP from Rajasthan state, and his step-mother actress Hema Malini is an incumbent BJP MP from Uttar Pradesh state.

     

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