BJP Asks Congress to Get Its Own House in Order After Sexual Harassment Cases Surface
File photo of BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi.
New Delhi: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) attacked Congress president Rahul Gandhi over the state of women’s safety in the country after allegations of sexual harassment against the grand old party’s functionaries surfaced on Tuesday.
Attacking the Congress at a press conference, BJP spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi referred to a complaint by a former employee of the Congress’s social media cell against her then colleague as well as an allegation of sexual harassment against a functionary of NSUI, the party’s student wing.
Lekhi claimed that even Gandhi’s sister Priyanka was not safe, saying she was harassed by Congress workers in April during a march to India Gate to protest against the Kathua rape and murder case. The BJP spokesperson also raked up the Delhi Police’s charge against Congress leader Shashi Tharoor of abetment to suicide of his wife.
Rubbishing reports that portrayed India in a bad light in terms of women’s safety, Lekhi claimed that “far worse” cases are happening abroad and that New York, and not New Delhi, is world’s “rape capital”.
Delhi Police is looking into the complaint of the Congress’s social media cell worker and it should register an FIR and tell people “under whose pressure” it had not filed a case yet, Lekhi said.
Gandhi had targeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the issue of women’s safety, and said it was “a shame” that a survey found India was the world’s most dangerous country for women due to the high risk of sexual violence.
Lekhi also termed as “fake” the Thomson Reuters Foundation survey of about 550 experts on women’s issues that found India the world's most dangerous country for women. “It is not about criticism, it is about portraying India in a bad light. They are not portraying that India came together to protect its daughters and change its laws,” she said in reference to the aftermath of the 2012 Delhi gang rape.
“On the same day there was a case of similar nature in New York. Far worse cases are there but nobody gets to know because media chooses to protect that. Here the media, under freedom, is allowed to be free, which is absolutely fantastic,” she said, claiming that people’s attitude have become more pro-active towards women now. “We are all there to protect the interests of Indian daughters. What happens to western daughters? People don’t come on road. People don't change their laws,” she said.
Referring to recent cases of lynching, Lekhi suggested that the word should not be used. “Stop using the world lynching. It is not happening... understand the value,” she said. “When you deal with criminal matters, you must report them as criminal matters. And giving it a colour of caste, religion or anything is incorrect,” she said.