They don’t respect women: Rahul’s veiled attack on Modi

Rahul Gandhi said that opposition does not respect women.

Tumkur (karnataka) | Updated: February 17, 2014 1:12 am
Appealing to women, who constitute more than 40 per cent of the electors, he said, “We want to use your strength in the progress of this country. (PTI Photo) Appealing to women, who constitute more than 40 per cent of the electors, he said, “We want to use your strength in the progress of this country. (PTI Photo)

In a clear sign that the Congress will be targeting the support of women in the polls, vice-president Rahul Gandhi reached out to women voters at an all-women rally in Tumkur and tried to draw a parallel between the subjugation of women in the country with his own attempt to counter a bully at a boarding school.

The Congress leader also made a subtle reference to the BJP and its PM nominee Narendra Modi saying that the party does not respect women. “Their ideological ‘sangathan’ has no place for women. Their leader, what he says and what he does all of you know about it.

I am not going to elaborate,” he said at the rally. He expressed hope that the 33 per cent reservation Bill for women would be passed in Parliament during the current and final session under the UPA watch. However, the Congress leader also gave his own rhetoric an escape clause stating that the Congress list of candidates for the Lok Sabha polls would not be able to reflect the party’s efforts to empower women but would be male dominated like the rest of society.

“India cannot be a superpower until we empower women. Unless we empower nearly 50 per cent of our population we will always continue to remain on the way to being a superpower. States where women are empowered are progressing fast,” he said.

“We want to give women equal opportunity. In panchayats, in the Assembly, in Parliament, more women should be visible,” he said. “We want to use your strength in the progress of this country. We want to open doors for women, doors of schools, hospitals. Without you there is no progress,” he said.

The Congress has during its tenure introduced legislation against sexual harassment and rape, he said.

Narrating his own trauma as a 12-year old child who was bullied by a bigger boy at boarding school he drew a parallel to the situation of women across India.

“Women constantly face harassment at home or at work, they feel insecure to travel by public transport or to roam around freely in public places from fear of being attacked or victimized by those involved in moral policing,’’ the Congress vice-president said. He said the Congress would endeavour to create a fearless society for women.

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  1. B
    Feb 16, 2014 at 1:01 pm
    Strange that on the eve of the general elections, this VP pays lip service to Women. What was his party doing in the last 60 years and particularly in the last 10 years?
    1. R
      Feb 17, 2014 at 6:25 am
      UPA government works toward women empowerment: Stern measures will be taken to ensure the elimination of female foeticide and infanticide. Marriage registration will be made mandatory, the Domestic Violence bill was ped, for women's safety many laws and act ped by UPA government. The government also did well in controlling ual harment against women.
      1. S
        Shashank Singh
        Feb 17, 2014 at 5:20 am
        I know that women are India's strength.Women are powerful now, thanks to congress' support, but the job is not done yet, some work is required to be done, congress is working on it.
        1. T
          Tarun Aggarwal
          Feb 17, 2014 at 5:12 am
          This is a fact, in the past few years BJP has been a total failure. Forget about women, it did not deliver in major infrastructural developments. Congress always worked for women.