UP minister asked to explain sexist comments

UP minister asked to explain sexist comments

Even as the controversy surrounding former minister Raja Bhaiyya for his alleged role in a police officer's killing refused to die down, another Uttar Pradesh minister appeared headed for trouble Friday.

The National Commission for Women (NCW) Friday sought an explanation from Khadi and Cottage Industry Minister Raja Ram Pandey for his alleged sexist comments about an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer last month.

Last month, during a public function at Kamla Nehru Institute of Technology in Sultanpur, Pandey openly praised Sultanpur's women district magistrates (DMs) for their "beauty".

The minister, during his speech, said: "It is my privilege that I'm the guardian minister of Sultanpur for the second time and every time I get a chance to work with beautiful woman DMs."

He was referring to K. Dhanalakshmi, the incumbent district magistrate, and recalled how he always thought about her predecessor Kamini Chauhan Ratan that "no one could ever match her beauty".

The NCW has sought explanation from Pandey regarding the "abjectly sexist and improper comments made by him".

NCW member Nirmala Samant Prabhavalkar has asked Pandey to present his detailed comments and/or written reply duly supported by an affidavit in response to the complaint filed by activist Nutan Thakur within 15 days.