The most outrageous remarks from politicians on India’s gang-rape case

Published: January 7, 2013

Rape protest signsIndia is still shocked and numbed at the death of the Delhi gang-rape victim. People have called for the government to honour the woman and punish her assaulters quickly. It’s an issue which needs to be dealt with tact and sensitivity — but some of India’s leaders may need a crash course in diplomacy. From the President’s son to party leaders, politicians have been speaking about women and rape.

Here are what some leaders said, according to the Hindustan Times:
Abhijit Mukherjee: Speaking to a Bengali-language television channel in his earlier assembly constituency Nalhati in Birbhum district, Abhijit Mukherjee, son of President Pranab Mukherjee, said on Christmas day that “highly dented-painted” women visited discotheques and then appeared at India Gate to protest the Delhi bus gang-rape. “What’s basically happening in Delhi is somewhat like Egypt or elsewhere, where there was something called the Spring Revolution, which has very little connection with ground realities. In India, staging candle-light marches, going to discotheques – we did all this during our student life too, we were students too – I know very well what kind of character students should have,” Abhijit said. “Those who claim to be students – I can see many beautiful women among them they were highly dented-painted – they’re giving interviews on TV, they’ve brought their children to show them the scenes,” he said. “I have grave doubts whether they’re students because women of that age are generally not students,” said Abhijit, who was elected an MP from Jangipur Lok Sabha seat in Murshidabad to fill up the vacancy caused by his father’s elevation to the presidency. He later apologized for his remarks.

 
Anisur Rahman: CPI-M leader Anisur Rahman had ridiculed the Banerjee government’s decision to compensate victims of crimes against women like rape and trafficking. “We have told the chief minister in the assembly that the government will pay money to compensate rape victims. What is your fee? If you are raped, what will be your fee?,” asked Anisur Dec 25. “As an opposition leader, she took along Champala Sardar from South 24 Parganas district to the state secretariat, claiming she was raped.” “We then told her: “Don’t bring such hela fela meye (girls without any position in society). Bring some good girls.” “And there can be no better girl than you. You can say you have been raped. We ask, didi moni (elder sister), what is your fee? How much will you take for getting raped,” he asked.
Mohan Bhagwat: RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat had claimed that the incidents of rape were the result of adoption of western culture in society as a whole and that erosion of traditional Indian values were more pronounced in urban areas. “Crimes against women happening in urban India are shameful. It is a dangerous trend. But such crimes won’t happen in Bharat or the rural areas of the country. You go to villages and forests of the country and there will be no such incidents of gang-rape or sex crimes,” he had said. “Where ‘Bharat’ becomes ‘India’ with the influence of western culture, these type of incidents happen. The actual Indian values and culture should be established at every stratum of society where women are treated as ‘mother’,” Bhagwat added.

Kailash Vijayvargiya: When asked to comment on recent sexual harassment cases in the country, with Madhya Pradesh in particular, BJP leader Kailash Vijayvargiya said: “Ek hi shabd hai – maryada. Maryada ka ulanghan hota hai, toh Sita-haran ho jata hai. Laxmanrekha har vyakti ki khichi gayi hai. Us Laxmanrekha ko koi bhi par karega, toh Ravan samne baitha hai… woh Sita-haran karke le jayega”. (Whenever people cross their limitations, deterioration is bound to happen. It applies to everyone in the society. Whoever breaches the line, he/she will confront a Ravan) The minister’s remark drew sharp reaction from political parties as it triggered protests in the state and across nation causing major embarrassment for BJP.

Botsa Satyanarayana: Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee president Botsa Satyanarayana termed the Delhi gang-rape incident a minor one and questioned the need for women to be out at midnight. He later withdrew his statement. “Just because India got freedom at midnight, is it necessary for women to move on the streets at midnight?” he asked. Botsa expressed the view that the woman should not have boarded a private bus at such an odd hour. “She should have assessed the situation before getting into the bus,” he said. “Though it was a minor incident, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi was gracious enough to intervene and hold negotiations with the protestors to bring the situation under control. It is highly commendable on the part of Sonia to respond to the situation so quickly,” he said.
Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar: Senior Trinamool Congress leader Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar speaking to a news channel said, “If you’re referring to the Park Street rape, see that is a different case altogether. That was not at all a rape case. It was a misunderstanding between the two parties involved between a lady and her client. This was not a rape.” She made this comment while reacting to another obscene comment made by senior CPI(M) leader Anisur Rehman on chief minister Mamata Banerjee.

Ashok Singhal: After RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat’s remarks that rapes were prevalent in India and not in Bharat, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad blamed the ‘western model’ of lifestyle for growing incidents of sexual assault on women including rape, saying cities were losing the values. VHP international adviser Ashok Singhal termed as “alarming” the western model of living, which he said had been imbibed from the US. “This western model is alarming. What is happening is we have imbibed the US. We have lost all the values we had in cities,” Singhal told reporters in response to a question on the growing rape incidents in the country. He particularly faulted the live-in relationship style when he said “it is not only foreign to our culture, but also hostile.” Virginity was preserved. But the purity has been totally disturbed (now)…we are losing it,” he said.

Puducherry government: In a regressive move, the Puducherry government has reportedly suggested redesigning of school uniforms to make it mandatory for girl students to wear overcoats to prevent sexual crimes.”The meeting resolved to introduce overcoats for girl students, operate special buses for them and ban mobile phones in schools. Our government is committed to ensuring safety of women, particularly girl students,” school education minister T Thiagarajan said Thiagarajan reportedly also said the government will operate exclusive buses for girl students from the next academic year with only women conductors.

Asaram Bapu: Spiritual Guru Asaram Bapu has landed himself in a controversy over his remark that the December 16 Delhi gang rape victim is as guilty as those responsible for the barbaric sexual assault on her. “Only 5-6 people are not the culprits. The victim daughter is as guilty as her rapists… She should have called the culprits brothers and begged before them to stop… This could have saved her dignity and life. Can one hand clap? I don’t think so,” media reports quoted Asaram Bapu, as saying. According to media reports, the self-proclaimed godman further said that he is against harsher punishments for the accused as the law could be misutilized. “We have often seen such laws are made to be misutilized… Dowry harassment law is the biggest example,” he said.
Raj Thackeray: Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief Raj Thackeray has blamed “Bihari” migrants for the recent case of gang-rape of a girl in New Delhi. “All are talking about the Delhi gangrape, but nobody is asking from where these men came. No one is asking who did this. So many cases are slapped against me (for speaking against Biharis) but no one is talking about the fact that all these rapists are from Bihar,” he said, addressing a public function in suburban Goregaon on Saturday.”The system has collapsed,” Raj said.






Featured

Screen Shot 2015-03-04 at 3.45.37 PM

Large fire at Port of Vancouver (with video)

VANCOUVER DESI Vancouver firefighters and haz-mat crews are battling a large fire at Vancouver’s port on Burrard Inlet that began Wednesday afternoon. The fire was…
Continue Reading »

immigrants-work-study-bc-career

Canada-wide initiative helps immigrants find work in fields for which they have prepared

LARISSA CAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI When Manbir Randhawa immigrated from India to B.C., she knew she’d have to “start from scratch” in order to land a…
Continue Reading »

Desi-weird news

Doctor’s afraid to release baby who ‘spontaneously combusted’ to his mom

VANCOUVER DESI Doctors in India are reluctant to release a baby who ‘spontaneously combusted’ to his mom, fearing she suffers from an attention-seeking syndrome, Britain’s…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

Screen Shot 2015-03-04 at 3.45.37 PM

Large fire at Port of Vancouver (with video)

VANCOUVER DESI Vancouver firefighters and haz-mat crews are battling a large fire at Vancouver’s port on Burrard Inlet that began Wednesday afternoon. The fire was…
Continue Reading »

immigrants-work-study-bc-career

Canada-wide initiative helps immigrants find work in fields for which they have prepared

LARISSA CAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI When Manbir Randhawa immigrated from India to B.C., she knew she’d have to “start from scratch” in order to land a…
Continue Reading »

Environment-Surrey-students

Surrey students grow ‘green mindedness’ at school

SARAH ORLINA SURREY NOW SURREY — On a cloudy Thursday morning, three Grade 7 students are roaming the hallways of Royal Heights Elementary school in…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

Rebellious matrimonial goes viral

“Definitely not bahu material”: Indian woman’s rebellious matrimonial ad goes viral (with video)

VANCOUVER DESI When 24-year-old Indhuja Pillai’s parents put her profile on a regular matrimonial website, she couldn’t take it down soon enough. “I am no…
Continue Reading »

brutal DELHI gang rape

“What is there in spreading the views of a rapist?” India orders TV stations not to broadcast rape documentary

ASHOK SHARMA THE ASSOCIATED PRESS NEW DELHI — Indian authorities ordered television stations Tuesday not to broadcast a documentary about a gang rape on a…
Continue Reading »

Immigrant-language test

‘You are an outsider’: Community rallies around Canadian convenience store owners beaten by customer

THE CANADIAN PRESS BEAUSEJOUR, Man. — Owners of a convenience store in Manitoba who were beaten by a customer are seeing an outpouring of support….
Continue Reading »

Hands Against Racism

Hands Against Racism: Send us a selfie and make a statement against racism (with video)

VANCOUVER DESI Vancouver Desi’s digital anti-racism campaign, Raise Your Hands Against Racism, officially kicked off Thursday, with people across the Lower Mainland sending in selfies…
Continue Reading »

bully

Video of Sikh boy being bullied, called ‘terrorist’ on school bus goes viral (w/ video)

VANCOUVER DESI A video of a young Sikh student in the U.S. being bullied and called a “terrorist” by a group of children on a…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Bollywood photos

Gallery: Aishwarya Rai’s stunning photoshoot for Vogue

VANCOUVER DESI The world’s most beautiful woman, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan may have stepped away from the silver screen for a while but she says, “Comeback?…
Continue Reading »

Instagram photo

Gallery: Bollywood celebrity shots this week

VANCOUVER DESI Bollywood’s growing love for selfies is self evident. More and more celebrity photos are showing up on Twitter and Instagram than ever before….
Continue Reading »

Mallika Sherawat

Indian court lifts stay on release of controversial Bollywood film ‘Dirty Politics’

IANS Patna – A day after it stayed the release of Bollywood film “Dirty Politics” in cinema halls, the Patna High Court Wednesday lifted the…
Continue Reading »