Amid the loud demands for strong laws that enhance safety of women following the gang-rape of a paramedical student in Delhi, cabinet minister of Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) stirred controversy after he opined that women who breach their moral limits pay the price.
Kailash Vijayvargiya, BJP leader from Madhya Pradesh said, "Ek hi shabd hai - Maryada. Maryada ka ulanghan hota hai, toh Sita-haran ho jata hai. Laxman-rekha har vyakti ki khichi gayi hai. Us Laxman-rekha ko koi bhi par karega, toh Rawan samne baitha hai, woh Sita-haran karke le jayega."
He suggested that one must abide to certain moral limits or will otherwise pay for the consequences. He supported his statement quoting an example from the Hindu epic, Ramayana, in which Sita was abducted by Ravan.
Meanwhile, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat kicked off another row by commenting that 'Rapes happen in India, not Bharat', suggesting that rapes were confined to cities and not rural areas. "Such crimes hardly take place in Bharat, but they frequently occur in India," Bhagwat told CNN-IBN. He statement gave hint that westernization was the reason behind rapes in cities.
Slamming the comments made by the leaders, National Commission for Women Chief Mamata Sharma said that political leaders were trying to curtail the progress of women. She said, "I want to request senior leader Mohan Bhagwat to stop citing differences between India and Bharat. We are all Indians staying in this country. Bhagwatji needs to go to the grassroots level and then compare the condition of women in villages and cities."
RSS spokesperson Ram Madhav defended Bhagwat's comment urging that his comments should be taken in the right sense. He said, "He has condemned the heinous crime and said that if necessary people who are involved in such kind of act should be hanged to death. He said that in Bhartiya tradition, we have great respect for women and if we go away from the Bhartiya tradition of respecting woman, one will end up in indulging in such criminal acts. There is no need to give other interpretations to his statement."