Delhi Gang-Rape
People shout slogans and hold placards during a protest in New Delhi December 29, 2012. Reuters

In the midst of deep grief over the death of the gang-rape victim at a Singapore hospital, controversial and derogatory statements by some politicians continue to spark outrage among the public.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's "theek hai" remark, which was made at the end of his address to the nation over the Delhi gang-rape incident, drew intense criticism from the public. Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dixit repeated the blunder with her "It's okay" remark after her statement to reporters condoling the death of the young medical student.

Their remarks could have been a 'slip of the tongue' but several other politicians may have actually meant their own comments.

Andhra Pradesh Congress president Botsa Satyanarayana earned the wrath of the people after describing the Delhi gang-rape as a "small incident" and saying that women shouldn't go out during late hours.

Abhijit Mukherjee, Congress MP and son of President Pranab Mukherjee, kicked off a row with his outrageous reference to female protestors in Delhi as "dented and painted."

"I would term the protests in Delhi as what is popularly known as Pink Revolution. It is becoming fashionable to land up on the streets with candle in hand. Such people are completely disconnected from reality. They go to discotheques. I am very well versed with student activism and I can bet on it that most of the protesters are not students. They are dented and painted women chasing two minutes on fame, giving interviews on TV. The protesters do not fall in the age group of students," Abhijit told a news channel in Kolkata.

Following intense criticism, Mukherjee offered a public apology for his sexist comments.

Joining the list is CPM MLA Anisur Rahaman, whose cheap comments on West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee was slammed by his own party leaders. His remark, which came against the backdrop of the Delhi gang-rape case, was made during his speech at Itahar in North Dinajpur.

"The government will do good to all - farmers, workers, rape victims. This is the same Mamata Banerjee who went to South 24-Parganas and brought Champala Sardar to Writers' Buildings claiming she was raped. She takes up those hela fela girls. I told her if you want to bring some girls, bring some good ones. There is no better girl than you. We ask, didimoni what is your price? How much will you take for getting raped?" Rahaman reportedly said referring to the Trinamool Congress chief's announcement of to give Rs 20,000 to a rape victim.

The Trinamool Congress has filed a privilege notice against the MLA for his comments. The West Bengal Human Rights Commission (WBHRC) has asked the state director-general of police (DGP) to probe the incident and file a report within three weeks.

Another politician, whose faux pas earned him disgrace in the eyes of the public, was Banwari Lal Singhal, BJP legislator from Alwar city constituency in Rajasthan, who said wearing skirts in schools led to sexual harassment.

He wrote a letter to the chief secretary, demanding pant-shirts or salwar suits as uniforms instead of skirts for girls.

"Girls either walk to school or wait for school buses at various points in Alwar. That is when they face lewd comments from mischievous elements," he said in a letter. "It should be prohibited keeping in view the rise of social crimes against women. The school should have pant-shirts or salwar suits as uniforms for girl students."

The controversial comments by the politicians came in the wake of huge protests from the public following the brutal gang-rape case in Delhi.

The 23-year-old medical student was raped, severely beaten and thrown off a moving bus along with her male friend by six men on Dec 16, triggering one of the biggest protests in Delhi. She passed away at Mount Elizabeth Hospital, Singapore, on Saturday morning.

The six accused have been arrested and the trial is expected to begin early January.

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