Union Minister Smriti Irani on Monday slammed former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath for his “item” jibe against state minister Imarti Devi, and questioned the Gandhi family for maintaining silence on the matter.
“I can’t find any justification that Kamal Nath ji can give for using such derogatory word against a woman political leader. I can’t understand why Gandhi family chooses to be absolutely silent,” Irani said, as quoted by news agency ANI.
Nath, while addressing an assembly bypoll meeting on Sunday in Gwalior’s Dabra town, made the purported remark, sparking a nationwide controversy.
“I don’t think Gandhi family will take action against Kamal Nath for making such a derogatory statement against a lady. Be it Kamal Nath or Digvijaya Singh, these are the people who keep the fire burning in Gandhi family’s kitchen,” the BJP leader added.
The former chief minister, however, said the remark was not meant to insult anyone. “I said something, it wasn’t to insult anyone… I just didn’t remember the (person’s) name… this list (in his hand) says item number 1, item number 2. Is this an insult? Kamal Nath doesn’t insult anyone, he’ll only expose you with truth,” the Congress leader was quoted as saying by ANI.
Meanwhile, Imrati Devi, BJP’s candidate in the Madhya Pradesh elections, said Sonia Gandhi should dismiss Nath.
Condemning Kamal Nath’s remark, the National Commission for Women (NCW) on Monday sought an explanation from the Congress leader.
“The commission strongly condemns this irresponsible and disparaging statement made by the leader. The words used in the video are highly defamatory and shows disrespect towards the dignity of a woman,” the NCW said in a statement.
“At a time when we want more women to enter politics, such disrespectful remarks against a woman leader, that too from a person holding such a responsible position, is very unfortunate,” the statement further said.
The NCW has also asked the Election Commission to take necessary action against Nath.