Referring to the debate on the Rafale deal in Parliament, Congress president Rahul Gandhi implied, betraying a regressive mindset, that defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman, being a woman, was not competent enough to speak on the issue
New Delhi: Congress president Rahul Gandhi landed in think soup on Wednesday after he took a dig at Narendra Modi by saying that the Prime Minister fielded a woman to defend him on the Rafale debate before fleeing away from the Parliament.
Gandhi was referring to defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
"The watchman with a 56-inch chest ran away and told a woman, Sitharamanji, defend me. I won't be able to defend myself, defend me. For two and a half hours, the woman could not defend him. I had asked a straight question - answer yes or no - but she couldn't answer," said the Congress chief while addressing a rally in Rajasthan.
Following this remark, BJP leaders lambasted Gandhi. While external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj said that the comment mark a "new low" in Indian politics, Union textiles minister Smriti Irani tweeted on Thurday with the hashtag #MisogynistRahul.
Rahul Gandhi's comments on Defence Minister Nirmala Sitaraman's reply to a debate on a subject relating to Ministry of Defence is a new low in the history of Indian politics.— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) January 9, 2019
Modi also slammed Gandhi by saying that he insulted the country’s first woman defence minister.
"For the first time, a daughter of the country has become defence minister. Our defence minister silenced all the opposition parties in parliament (on Rafale) and exposed their lies. They were so stunned that now they are insulting a woman defence minister. They are insulting India's women power," Modi said at a rally in Agra.
However, the Congress president fails to learn his lessons. Yesterday evening, he again came up with another sexist post.
With all due respect Modi Ji, in our culture respect for women begins at home.— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) January 9, 2019
Stop shaking. Be a man and answer my question: Did the Air Force and Defence Ministry object when you bypassed the original Rafale deal?
Yes? Or No? #RafaleScam
The National Commission for Women (NCW) on Thursday issued a notice to Rahul for making sexist remarks against the defence minister in Parliament.
The NCW has sought a 'satisfactory explanation' for his 'extremely misogynistic, offensive, unethical' comments about a 'woman minister'.
National Commission for Women (NCW) issues notice to Congress President Rahul Gandhi over his statement "PM ran away & asked a 'mahila' (Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman) to defend him" pic.twitter.com/xTAyqNeXg1— ANI (@ANI) January 10, 2019
Here are some other reactions to the Congress’s blatant sexism
Defence Minister @nsitharaman’s outstanding speech in Parliament has silenced the opposition.— Amit Shah (@AmitShah) January 9, 2019
Unable to counter her on facts, they’re resorting to misogyny.
They owe an apology to India’s Nari Shakti. pic.twitter.com/Pw0nepcu6s
What is @rahulgandhi trying to imply with his misogynistic statement- “... ek mahila say kaha meri raksha kiijiye."? Does he think women are weak? The irony- calling an accomplished defence minister of the largest democracy a weak person. @nsitharaman @narendramodi @ncwindia— rekha sharma (@sharmarekha) January 9, 2019
My daughter is a Defence officer - she can protect any civilian male including @narendramodi @RahulGandhi ,Congress has insulted her strength by the patriarchal mocking of @nsitharaman and accusing Modi of hiding behind her https://t.co/dD9x6U9xPV— nidhi bahuguna (@vinirish) January 9, 2019
Last Updated 1:06 PM IST