Kerala: Congress’ Ramesh Chennithala triggers row with rape remark, draws ire

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Updated: September 09, 2020 1:56 PM

Kerala: The case related to the rape of a 44-year-old woman allegedly by a junior health inspector when she had gone to collect the report of her coronavirus screening from his residence.

Ramesh Chennithala under fire for his comment on rape incident.

Senior Congress leader Ramesh Chennithala has stoked a fresh controversy with his remark on the accused in a rape case in Kerala.

The case related to the rape of a 44-year-old woman allegedly by a junior health inspector when she had gone to collect the report of her coronavirus screening from his residence. The man has been arrested and suspended from the service.

“The accused health inspector is a member of a pro-Congress association. An active member. If all Congress persons started assaulting like this, how can women live?” Ramesh told reporters at a press conference on Tuesday.

“Is it written somewhere that only DYFI workers can assault?” the senior Congress leader had retorted. “These allegations are all lies, that he (the accused) is part of a NGO association or a Congress member… lies being told,” he said.

State Health Minister KK Shailaja called his remark insulting and sought an apology.

“Ramesh Chennithala must apologise for making a statement which insults women,” she said.

State women’s panel chief MC Josephine also asked Ramesh to apologise and withdraw the remarks.

The Congress leader later said his words were misconstrued by “CPI(M) cyber goons”.

“What I meant was that not only DFYI, but NGO Union people are also raping… there should not be any kind of atrocities against women. The controversy is a bid to divert public attention from sexual exploitation of Covid-19 patients,” he clarified.

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