BJP MP Udit Raj Tuesday said the #MeToo campaign on social media was the beginning of a “wrong practice” of women levelling sexual harassment allegations against a person “10 years” after an incident. In what was the first response from a member of the ruling party, Raj supported the campaign but wondered how the allegations will be verified. The allegations would dent the character of a person, Raj said.
“#MeToo campaign jaruri hai lekin kisi vyakti par 10 saal baad yaun shoshan ka aarop lagane ka kya matlab hai? Itne saalon baad aise maamle mein satyata ki jaanch kaise ho sakegi? Jis vyakti par jhootha aarop laga diya jaega uski chhavi ka kitna bada nuksaan hoga ye sochne waali baat hai. Galat pratha ki shuruat hai (#MeToo campaign is important but what’s the use of blaming somebody of sexual harassment after 10 years. How will the truth be verified in these cases? One wrong blame will ruin the image of the person. It’s the beginning of a wrong practice), Raj tweeted.
Taking to Twitter, Raj also questioned allegations of rape made by women in live-in relationships. “Yeh kaise sambhav hai ki koi ‘live-in relation’ mein rehne waali ladki apne partner par kabhi bhi ‘rape’ ka aarop lagakar uss vyakti par mukadma darj karaa de, wo vyajti jail chala jaaye? Iss tarah ki ghatna aaye din kisi na kisi ke saath horaha hai. Kya yeh ab blackmailing k liye nahi istemaal horaha hai (How is it possible that a girl in a ‘live-in relation’ can charge her partner with ‘rape’ at anytime and sue him and send the person to jail? This kind of event is happening nearly every day. Is it no longer going to be used for blackmailing),” he added.
In the last few days, several women have come forward on social media by sharing stories ranging from verbal to physical assault. Several organisations had to sever ties with those who had been named and shamed under the #MeToo and #TimesUp campaign. Among those include AIB comic artistes Tanmay Bhatt, writer-comedian Utsav Chakraborty and Queen director Vikas Bahl. Actors Nana Patekar and Alok Nath, best-selling author Chetan Bhagat and ex-DNA editor-in-chief Gautam Adhikari are some of the high profile names facing allegations of sexual harassment.