Communist Party of India (Marxist) Politburo Member and a former Rajya Sabha MP, Brinda Karat, slammed Rajasthan Minister Rajendra Singh Gudha for his sexist remark, saying that in addition to legal action under the Indian Penal Code (IPC), a law should be passed in Parliament and state assemblies prohibiting such comments on women. After comparing the status of roads to actor Katrina Kaif and actor-turned-politician Hema Malini, a newly-inducted minister in the Rajasthan Cabinet sparked controversy.
Brinda Karat told news agency ANI that it is “very objectionable,” and that “we have been advocating a severe code of conduct for elected representatives of the people in Assemblies and Parliament.” “There has to be some accountability as far as the use of language is concerned, as far as comments are concerned apart from the action which is dealt with under IPC. This is something which really has to be done by Assemblies and Parliament to take action against these serial commenters on the sexist comments against women,” Karat noted.
Karat asked how long such remarks could be tolerated. “This man is unfit to serve as a minister. What kind of example is he creating for the public when he makes sexist remarks himself?” she continued.
After a purported video of him comparing the status of roads to actor Katrina Kaif and actor-turned-politician Hema Malini went viral, the newly-inducted minister in the Rajasthan Cabinet has landed in trouble. Gudha, an MLA from Jhunjhunu district’s Udaipurwati, is one of six MLAs who won the 2018 Assembly elections on a BSP ticket before moving to Congress. Gudha was promoted to Minister of State in the recent Cabinet change.
Leaders make sexist remarks
The Congress MLA is seen talking with locals in Udaipurwati, his assembly constituency, in a video that has gone viral. Some people demand that the roads in the region be fixed while airing their grievances to Gudha. At this point, the minister jokes with the chief engineer of the Public Works Department who is present at the conference. The crowd erupts in laughter and applause, prompting Gudha to repeat the remark. To the amusement of his constituents, he said, “In my constituency, the roads should be made like Katrina Kaif’s cheeks.”
It’s nothing unusual for politicians to compare their ideal highways to actors’ cheeks. RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav sparked a controversy in 2005 when he promised to make Bihar’s roads as smooth as Hema Malini’s cheeks. The analogy was revived in 2019 by Madhya Pradesh law minister PC Sharma, who said the state’s pothole-ridden roads would soon be made “pretty” like the ‘Dream Girl’ star’s cheeks.