BJP legislator Ram Kadam, facing flak for his controversial remarks that he would help young men elope with girls they like, on Thursday apologised on social media. “My remarks have been distorted by political opponents to create a controversy that has hurt the sentiments of mothers and sisters. For that, I have expressed regret repeatedly. Again, I am apologising respecting mothers and sisters,” tweeted Kadam.
On Monday, Kadam, speaking at a Dahi Handi event, stoked controversy by saying that he would help young men elope with girls they want to marry. The Maharashtra State Commission for Women took suo motu cognisance of Kadam’s remarks on Wednesday and sought a clarification from him in eight days. The ABVP, student wing of the BJP, has asked Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to take action against him. On Thursday, the ABVP held a protest in Ghatkopar, Kadam’s Assembly constituency, to condemn his remarks. “He has insulted Indian culture. Fadnavis should take immediate action against party leaders who make controversial statements,” said Swati Chaudhari of the ABVP.
Opposition leader Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil said Kadam should apologise publicly. “After seeing the anger in the state in the last two days, he has apologised on social media and it is not sufficient. He should apologise publicly. The women’s wing of Congress protested against Kadam’s remarks but the police are not arresting him. It shows that the BJP and government are protecting him,” said Vikhe-Patil.
Women activists of the Shiv Sena also protested outside the BJP headquarters in Nariman Point, condemning Kadam’s remarks.