New Delhi, Dec 27: What should President Pranab Mukherjee do with his embarrassing son Abhijit? Make him atone for his sexist and medieval remark. If President Mukherjee is serious about what he talks and preaches, he should make his son lead the protest by women in Delhi. That is the only appropriate punishment Abhijit deserves and the President owes this to the outraged nation.
The President had said just two days ago that the need of the hour is to bring about a change in attitude towards women and everyone in society should learn to respect women because failure to do so is resulting in incidents like Delhi gangrape. But his son calls women demanding respect and safety as 'dented and painted women'.
"What's basically happening in Delhi is a lot like Egypt or elsewhere, where there's something called the spring revolution, which has very little connection with ground realities. In India, staging candle-lit marches, going to discotheques - we did all this during our student life too, we were students too - I know very well what kind of character students should have. Those who claim to be students - I can see many beautiful women among them - highly dented-painted (sic) - they're giving interviews on TV, they've brought their children to show them the scenes. I have grave doubts whether they're students because women of that age are generally not students," Abhijit was reported as saying by the electronic media.
Abhijit had said that students, who go to discotheques, think it is a fashion statement to hold candles and protest.
His comments come at a time when the whole nation is seething over the brutal rape of a 23-year-old Delhi girl who is fighting for her life. She was admitted to the the Safdarjung Hospital on Dec 16 and was moved to the Mt Elizabeth Hospital last night for further treatment. Her condition remains critical.
The President's son's comments drew flak from women politicians including Brinda Karat and Smriti Irani, who said the comments were extremely obnoxious and demanded a public apology.
The President's daughter Sharmistha said, "my father certainly would disagree with my brother's view." Disagreement is not sufficient, Mr President. Make your son go with the women on the streets and support the cause. It will also be an example to other men still holding traditional view of subjugation of women.