Nitish Kumar on Tuesday sparked a controversy, while stressing the importance of education among women to control the population.
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar on Wednesday apologises for his remark on population control after widespread condemnation from different quarters.
“I apologise if I have hurt anybody. It was not intended to hurt anybody. I have always maintained that education is necessary for population control. I have also stood for women empowerment and women’s development,” Kumar seeing the protest, walked straight towards the reporters and conveyed his apology after BJP legislators blocked the main entrance of the assembly.
Kumar on Tuesday sparked a controversy, while stressing the importance of education among women to control the population. He had put forward a vivid description in the state assembly of how an educated woman can restrain her husband during sexual intercourse.
“The husband’s acts led to more births. However, with education, a woman knows how to restrain him… this is the reason the numbers (of births) are coming down…You, journalists also understand it well. Earlier it (fertility rate) was 4.3, but it has now reached 2.9. And, soon we will reach 2,” Kumar had explained.
The BJP soon flayed Kumar for his remarks calling them “most misogynistic, vulgar and patriarchal”, and demanded his resignation.
Union minister Ashwini Kumar Choubey said Kumar has tarnished the dignity and decorum of democracy with his remarks. “It is very shameful to make such a statement in the Assembly. It seems he is mentally ill,” Choubey said, adding, “He should resign and immediately consult a doctor.”
BJP national spokesperson Shehzad Poonawalla said, “The language used by Nitish Kumar inside the assembly is most vulgar, indecent, most misogynistic, sexist and patriarchal. This is the mindset of the chief minister of Bihar… Kumar has become a bekabu babu from shushan babu. Imagine what will be the plight of women of Bihar if such a language is spoken in the Bihar assembly.”
However, state deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav clarified the statement saying that Kumar was talking about about sex education. He said that it is wrong to misinterpret Kumar’s statement. “Let me clarify something. Whatever the chief minister was saying was about sex education. People become hesitant over this topic, but these are taught in schools — in Science, Biology. Children learn this. He said what needs to be done practically to control the population. This should not be taken in a wrong manner, but as sex education,” Tejashwi said.
Meanwhile, National Commission of Women also slammed Nitish Kumar for the derogatory remarks saying that the latter appeared to speak like a C-grade movie dialogue in the legislative assembly in the presence of women lawmakers.
“Yesterday’s statement of Bihar CM was derogatory, we are deeply concerned with this…The way he spoke was like a C Grade movie dialogue in the Assembly in front of women and the worst was the men sitting behind him were laughing…His actions and gestures were almost like an ugly joke…The worst is this, the Speaker hasn’t expunged them yet…Bihar Assembly Speaker should take steps against him, his statements must be expunged,” NCW’s Chairperson Rekha Sharma said.
However, Congress MLA Neetu Devi, whose party is a part of the ruling alliance, stood in support of Bihar CM saying that Kumar did not speak with bad intentions. “He was trying to make a simple point but the BJP is indulging in mischief,” she said.