When a Twitter user suggested that BJP should target Congress as well, for a 2012 comment by its leader Sanjay Nirupam, following the Naresh Agarwal-Jaya Bachchan controversy, Union minister Smriti Irani said that political leanings cannot be used as an excuse to malign the dignity of a woman.
"My case is in the court of law for 5 years now. But let my battle not be an excuse to humiliate other women. In fact let it be a reminder for us that when a woman’s honour is challenged we stand as one in our condemnation irrespective of our politics," the minister said in a tweet.
She was responding to a comment by a Twitter user who had suggested that BJP should use the controversial statement made by the defected Samajwadi Party leader Naresh Agarwal against Jaya Bachchan to target Congress for a 2012 incident when its leader, Sanjay Nirupam’s remark had created a political row.
“You think you are a political analyst. Till yesterday, you were dancing on television and today you have become a politician," Nirupam had said during a debate on news channel televised in 2012.
Following Nirupam’s controversial remark, Irani filed a defamation case against the Congress leader.
So when a Twitter user tagged Irani in a tweet and suggested that BJP should also target the Congress party for the 2012 incident, Irani slammed the idea saying that political ideologies should not be used an excuse to score points on issues about women’s honour.
On Monday, Rajya Sabha MP Naresh Agrawal created a furore in the BJP minutes after joining it with comments belittling actor-politician Jaya Bachchan as someone "who used to dance in films".
“I was equated with those working in films... I was rejected for those who dance in films, work in films. I found it improper,” he said.
External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj took to social media to shoot down Agrawal's remarks, calling them "improper and unacceptable."
Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav too slammed his former close-aide, Agarwal, for his sexist comments and asked the saffron party to take an action against his former party member.
"We condemn the indecent remark made by BJP's Naresh Agarwal against Shrimati Jaya Bachchan. This (Agarwal's comment) is an insult to every women of India as well as the film industry. If BJP respects women then action should be taken against him (Agarwal). The Women's Commission should also initiate an action," he said in a tweet in Hindi.