The raping of two minors took place on one of the Goa beaches on 25th July. The case was disturbing. Chief Minister of Goa, Pramod Sawant, blamed the parents of the minors as they permitted them to step out late at night.
Four men gang-raped the two minors on the beach. These four men posed as policemen. One of them is a government employee. They raped the two girls after beating up the two boys, who were with them on the Benaulim beach in Goa.
“When 14-year-old children are out the whole night, parents should introspect. It is not the responsibility of the government and police if children do not listen to their parents". Pramod Sawant.
This comment created agony among people and opposition leaders. Some of the opposition leaders started demanding the resignation of the CM.
Priyanka Chaturvedi who is the leader of the Shiv Sena party in a statement called this comment ‘sick’.
This is not the first time that leaders have made bizarre comments about women. Tirath Singh Rawat the ex-CM of Uttarakhand created controversy when he commented on ripped jeans.
Tirath Singh Rawat said that a mother to two children was wearing jeans, he wondered what values she would give them. He also said that he was surprised to see that woman wearing ripped jeans and boots as she works in an NGO and goes out in society.
The comment was not well taken by the netizens and the comment created controversy. Judging a woman and cloth policing is not welcomed anymore. This comment made Twitter flood with pics of women in ripped jeans in support of women.
Somehow Tirath Singh Rawat invited many controversies. He resigned after four months of his tenure as CM.
Women have the right to dress the way they want. Creating cloth barriers and keeping them in the four walls of the house will not stop them from leading. Clothes should not be the parameter to judge a woman. She can be an efficient mother, daughter, sister, and wife but still wear whatever she feels like. She can be the best employee as well as the best mother her clothes are not the parameter but her deeds are.
Babul Supriyo commented in February “Beti Paraya Dhan Hoti Hai” (Daughters are else’s wealth). Babul Supriyo commented this to take a dig at TMC’s campaign. TMC launched a campaign “Bangla Nijer Mayekei Chey” (Bangal wants her daughter) for Mamta Banerjee.
This dig was not well received by many. Babul Supriyo later cleared that the meme which had written “Beti Paraya Dhan Hoti Hai. Is Baar Vida Kar Hi Denge.” (Daughters are another's wealth. Will send off her off this time) was originally shared by the Asansol BJP unit. He just shared it with the caption “Kar Hi Denge Vida Is Baar” (Will send her off for sure this time). But this misogynistic comment was enough to rouse people in agony.
Later he deleted the tweet.
These stereotypical memes on women have degraded and disrespected women for quite a long period. Memes should be a source of laughter but for that, you don’t need to disrespect someone or promote stereotypical thinking.
There are many instances where leaders have questioned the culture of women who are raped at night. According to many politicians, women should not travel at night and not wear the clothes of their choice.
Goa’s CM Pramod Sawant later clarified his statement after facing huge criticism on his remark. He came and said that he is the father of a daughter and a responsible government is grieved by this rape incident. He said that his remark was taken out of context. He clarified his statement after he faced flak over his comment.
He also said that he assures the citizens that the culprits will get stringent punishment under the law. He ensured that the safety of the citizen is their as well as the police’s main priority.
We need to make that this world is a better place for women where they don’t have to fear being the next victim, a world where the roads are safer for women at night. These comments by politicians will not help in that making. We need to include moral education where we are taught to respect the freedom of every other individual. We need to teach the meaning of consent to the generation irrespective of their gender.
Politicians need to introspect as they are the chosen representatives who should give us the feeling of protection, and they should not play the blame game.
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