HDK apologises to women

Kumaraswamy had made the controversial statement at Turuvekere in Tumakuru constituency on Saturday, sparking a row.
A Congress worker wears a mask and protests against former CM HD Kumaraswamy’s remarks against the party’s guarantees in Bengaluru on Monday
A Congress worker wears a mask and protests against former CM HD Kumaraswamy’s remarks against the party’s guarantees in Bengaluru on Monday Photo | Shashidhar Byrappa

BENGALURU: Coming under sharp criticism for his remarks that rural women have lost their way, or gone astray, because of the Congress government’s guarantee schemes, former CM HD Kumaraswamy on Monday expressed regret. Addressing a joint press conference with activist Girijamma, Akhila Bharata Karmika Hitarakshne Vedike president, Kumaraswamy apologised for his statement.

“I am sorry if my statement has hurt mothers. I have not insulted women, and have never done it in the past... My prestige is not at stake because I am expressing regret. I want to ask the mothers of the state: They (Congress government) give you Rs 2,000 and pick Rs 5,000 from the pockets of your husbands. I have told mothers to be careful about this and suggest they get stronger financially,” he said.

Kumaraswamy had made the controversial statement at Turuvekere in Tumakuru constituency on Saturday, sparking a row. In his defence, he raked up comments made by other politicians, notably former assembly Speaker K R Ramesh Kumar’s alleged ‘vulgar’ remarks about women in the assembly, and Danavagere MLA Shamanuru Shivashankarappa’s comment that BJP candidate Gayathri Siddeshwara was fit to remain in the kitchen. Girijamma said she had lodged a complaint against Surjewala and Shivashankarappa with the State Women’s Commission.

Kumaraswamy also brought up AICC general secretary Randeep Singh Surjewala’s comment about Mathura BJP MP and actor Hema Malini, and Congress leader Supriya Shrinate’s social media post about Mandi (Himachal Pradesh) BJP candidate and actor Kangana Ranaut. Surjewala’s comment on why Hema Malini was elected had got him a notice from the ECI.

Congress approaches ECI

The Congress approached the ECI against Kumaraswamy, terming his statement was intentional and had outraged the modesty of women. “His intention is to woo male voters in favour of BJP and JDS candidates in all 28 parliamentary constituencies,” alleged KPCC vice-president V S Ugrappa.

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