Abrogation of Article 370 ensured equal rights to J&K women, says Tejasvi Surya

Addressing the conclave, the Bengaluru South MP Tejasvi Surya said that one of the reasons for abrogation of Article 370 was to empower women of Jammu and Kashmir.

Bangalore South MP Tejasvi Surya addresses a women's conclave in Vadodara (Twitter/@Tejasvi_Surya)

BJP MP from Bengaluru South Tejasvi Surya Saturday said that the Narendra Modi-led government has ensured equal rights to women of Jammu and Kashmir with the abrogation of Article 370, which he termed as an “anti-woman law”.

Speaking at a Women’s Conclave in Vadodara as part of the 71st birthday celebrations of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Surya hailed Vadodara for setting up an example in women empowerment with two women MLAs out of the five seats in the city — one inducted as Minister for Women and Child Development department– as well as a woman MP, woman Deputy mayor looking after civic affairs, and a woman as the Municipal Commissioner.

Addressing the conclave, the Bengaluru South MP said that one of the reasons for abrogation of Article 370 was to empower women of Jammu and Kashmir.

“Two Gujaratis revoked the Article 370, which prohibited a woman from Jammu and Kashmir, who decides to marry a person from an outside state, from having her rights to her property or purchasing property in J&K,” Surya said.

“Imagine that you are in Gujarat and you go out to study or work in another city. You start liking a boy from Tamil Nadu and want to get married to him. When you get married, can you imagine yourself in a situation where if there was a law in Gujarat that if you marry anyone from outside, all your property in Gujarat will come to the government and your children will have no right over your property nor will you be able to purchase any property in Gujarat,” he added.

Slamming the Congress’ opposition to abrogation of Article 370, Surya said, “For 70 years, an anti-woman law was in place in J&K and everyone including liberals and Congress was silent about it. It was Prime Minister’s iron will and political determination that the Article was removed from the Constitution and equal rights — that women of Gujarat enjoy — were also given to the women of Jammu and Kashmir.”

Tejasvi Surya in Vadodara on Saturday. (Express Photo: Bhupendra Rana)

Surya took potshots at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, while narrating the contribution of Rajmate Vijayaraje Scindia as the founding member of the BJP.

Surya said, “The permanent Yuvraj and permanent youth leader of the country recently said, ‘ You don’t see RSS Chief with women in photographs, so they (RSS) are not in favour of women empowerment’… If he had searched well on Google, he would have found Mohan Bhagwatji attending many women empowerment events… The DNA of BJP is made up with values of respect and empowerment of women since the inception of the party. One of the founding members of the BJP was Rajmate Vijayaraje Scindia.”

“When the party was new and there was a dearth of financial resources, it was Rajmate Vijaraje Scindia, who mortgaged her jewellery and gave money for party activities,” he said adding that behind BJP’s growth is “sacrifice (tyaag) and devotion (tapasya) of millions of young and senior women party workers,” the BJP leader added.

Speaking of the “paradigm shift” with the recruitment of women officers in the Indian Army from the next academic session for the National Defence Academy, Surya said, “Women are multi-taskers — they can cook delicious meals at home and they can also go out and do their work well. And, if the country needs women to take up arms, they are capable of doing even that… This is not the first in the country, we know of Rani Laxmibai, I come from Karnataka and we have read in school textbooks the story of Kittur Queen Chinnamma.”

He also said that the “johar committed by Hindu women” to protect themselves from the “atrocities of Islamic warlords” is the legacy of women in combat in India.

Stating that Modi has emphasised works related to women empowerment, right since his days as Chief Minister of Gujarat, Surya spoke of the Jan Dhan and Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojanas as being the “first steps” to cultural change for women empowerment to abandon abusive marriages. Surya said, “In many parts of the country, women were not part of the financial system. But by making Jan Dhan accounts in their name, PM Modi has not only given them an identity but also helped them take the first step towards financial independence…”

Referring to the PMAY, where homes are registered in the name of the women for “security” reasons, Surya said, ” In our homes, we have been blessed to have parents, who have taught us how to treat our mothers and sisters, but that is not the case in all households… The women in rural areas live in perpetual fear that the husband will throw her out of the house. But now, how can you throw the woman out because the house is in the name of the woman.”



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