Mulayam gets NCW notice, makes U-turn on rape remarks

Mulayam gets NCW notice, makes U-turn on rape remarks

 The National Commission for Women (NCW) on Friday served a notice to Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Mulayam Singh Yadav for his remarks on rape, made on Thursday, and asked him to reply within three days.

“The NCW has taken suo-motu cognisance of the media reports and the complaints received from various organisations and individuals on the reprehensible comments made by Yadav, while questioning the death sentence awarded to three men convicted of two gang-rapes in Mumbai last week,” said the commission in a statement.

Meanwhile, facing flak from all quarters, Mulayam on Friday made a U-turn on his remarks, claiming that he was quoted out of context.

“My party respects women the most. We are for stern punishment to those guilty of rape, but the innocent must not be punished,” said Mulayam, while addressing an election rally at Budaon, about 300 km from here.

“No crime is more heinous than rape,” he went on to add.

Taking serious note of the remarks, NCW Chairperson Mamata Sharma has sent a notice to Yadav to give “an explanation to the commission in the matter within three days, failing which he has to appear before the commission.”

In a separate letter to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, Sharma requested him to examine and intervene into the matter, and take action as per law.
The NCW has also written to the chief election commissioner to express “serious concern” over the statements, and requested him to take action against him in accordance with the Model Code of Conduct.

“Such statements made during campaigning not only reflect his sheer insensitivity towards rape victims/survivors, utter disregard for women and threat to women’s security, but also encourage disrespect towards the laws of the land,” it said.

The SP chief, however, expressed surprise that his remarks had created so much controversy. “I did not say anything like that,” he said.

Addressing an election rally in Uttar Pradesh's Moradabad town on Thursday, the SP supremo had said he would try to get the law, which awards death sentence in rape cases, amended. “Girls befriend boys. When they have differences with the boys, they call it rape,” he had said. 

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