Minister for Fire and Emergency Services Javed Khan has once again showed his acute gender bias as he has refused to appoint 50 women as fire operators just because of the fact that they are women.
He is so much opposed to it that he would urge Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to amend a cabinet decision for recruiting 2,000 fire operators. Instead,he will ask the cabinet to change the decision seeking recruitment of 2,000 fire operators,receptionists and telephone operators.
Under no circumstances shall we take women as fire operators because women will not be able to do justice to this job. We will take them as receptionists or telephone operators. In fact if needed we will have the cabinet decision amended, Khan told The Indian Express.
Khan had to take this decision after the Civil Defence Department,which is also under him sent him a list of 500 volunteers,50 of them women,for recruitment to the post of fire operators. After the AMRI fire case it was found that there was a vacancy of 2,000 fire operators in the fire department and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee ordered filling up of the vacancies urgently. The decision was passed by the cabinet soon after.
Since the recruitment would take time,it was decided to take volunteers from the civil defence department to fill up the posts after imparting a short training to them. The decision was also taken because of the fact that a volunteer-turned fire operator would not have to be given regular salary of a fire operator. And Khan,who scrapped a Left Front government decision to appoint women as fire operators,was on a piquant position since the proposal came from his own department. Hence he has decided to absorb women for clerical jobs. With the cabinet decision in favour of recruitment for 2,000 fire operators,Khan now wants it to be amended so that clerical jobs are also covered by it.
The Left Front government took the decision of hiring women operators following incidents of fire operators being denied entry to Muslim households when major fires broke out. In India,only Tamil Nadu have women fire officers.
Khans decision has been denounced by eminent women activists of the city. I am really shocked to hear this kind of retrograde views. It has been scientifically proved that women can do many so called hazardous jobs. Our chief minister herself is a woman. She should consider the decision, said Usha Ganguly,actor and playwright.
Singer Haimanti Shukla said: Women are now flying aircraft. How can the minister take such a decision.