National uproar over ‘cheap minister’ Nitish Kumar’s sexist slurs

NEW DELHI | Updated: 08 November, 2023 10:15 pm IST

NEW DELHI: Following Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s sexist and derogatory statement on women’s education being limited to controlling the libido of their husbands, many female leaders trashed his comments calling him “Cheap Minister” and a C-grade cinema inspirant.

On the forefront of the scandal, a member of the INDIA-bloc’s Samajwadi Party’s spokesperson, Juhie Singh, gave Kumar the benefit of the doubt, hoping that he would not use such language ever again. “Every minister should speak about women with dignity and respect. What he said, if he realised was said in a crass manner and women understand what he said. However, they would have also understood the same if he had said it in a more courteous and well-mannered manner. Hopefully, he understands this and does not repeat this mistake again,” said the Janata Dal (United) ally.

Bharatiya Janata Party leader from Tamil Nadu, Khushbu Sundar, following Kumar’s comments demanded INDIA alliance leaders — Mamata Banerjee, Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra — raise their voices against the CM to actually project “women empowerment”.

She said, “It’s extremely disgraceful and appalling to see the Bihar CM make such statements in the Assembly. What has happened to Sonia Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi and Mamata Banerjee? These women are quiet. Is this the INDIA that they talk about?”

She added, “How can he talk about a woman’s reproductive organ in front of lawmakers? Tejashvi had said that he was providing sex education but was he providing it to the 70 year olds in the assembly or the legislators present there? What was the need for it? It makes me shudder to think that we have these kinds of lawmakers who speak this kind of language in the Assembly.”

During the course of the speech that Kumar was making to get his point across in a crass sex-comedy, it was BJP MLC, Nivedita Singh who exited the parliament with tears in her eyes, stating that Kumar had now humiliated the entirety of Bihar. “It is not appropriate to make such dirty statements in the House. The Chief Minister was speaking and we all were listening to him. I just walked out of the house,” Singh said.

On the other hand, BJP leader from Uttar Pradesh, Aparna Yadav spoke to news agencies to condemn the speech Kumar made, reminding the people of Bihar that while voting, they should not vote for leaders who cannot respect women. “This kind of statement by Bihar’s CM is really shameful for the whole country. Now when the elections happen, Bihar people should remember what kind of people they voted for. He should resign,” she said.

The amount of scrutiny that has left Kumar seething has arrived after the National Commission for Women chief, Rekha Sharma, called his statements out for being “disgusting” and utterly “sexist”. She said, “The kind of statement he made in the assembly was like a dialogue from a C-grade film. This statement he made in the assembly is a message to all the women and in front of men. All womenfolk is ashamed of him.”

As of now, Priyanka Chaturvedi from Shiv Sena (UBT) has come out defending Kumar, referring to it as a slip. On the other hand, there remains radio silence from other members of the INDIA alliance.

ALSO READ: Controversial remark by Bihar CM Nitish Kumar in Legislative Assembly sparks debate

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