For sheer asinine comments, the Oscar goes to Vikram Saini

It is not even crass humour because Vikram is totally earnest about his advisory and stands by it, stating unequivocally that he said nothing wrong.



By Bikram Vohra (Between the Lines)

Published: Sat 10 Aug 2019, 9:32 PM

Last updated: Sat 10 Aug 2019, 11:34 PM

We are accustomed to our politicians saying foolish things. Like girls in short skirts are asking for it. And if boys molest women well, boys will be boys and, of course, cow dung cures cancer when the cows are not exhaling oxygen. But for sheer asinine comments, if there was an Oscar for this category it would go uncontested to Bharatiya Janata Party's Vikram Saini who so succinctly reduced this monumental decision to scrap Article 370 in Kashmir to its base level. The member of the legislative assembly said, excited Indian bachelors can rush to Kashmir and marry pretty and fair girls from the valley.
It is not easy to combine sexism, racism, prejudice, apartheid, and misogyny into one sentence and this person has successfully done just so. Here is India bracing itself for a backlash from certain quarters, witnessing its neighbour calling for a global condemnation, measuring China's hostile response and planning the steps towards easing tension in Kashmir and there is this unrepentant politician rabbiting on about men dashing off to marrying these girls as if all Kashmiri women were desperately waiting for Indian men of the Muslim faith from the mainland to come and ravish them.
It is not even crass humour because Vikram is totally earnest about his advisory and stands by it, stating unequivocally that he said nothing wrong and the 'fair' women quotient is now bubbling with opportunity.
Of course, it is scary that people like this have political authority. This is what he has boiled down this historic if controversial step to.marrying women with a light complexion. Not only does it belittle 60 per cent of Indians who are dark-skinned and non-Kashmiri but it also underscores his dirty mindset and shows no respect for women per se.
And what is also scarier is that people like Saini get away with such outrageous remarks. The BJP high command chastises with a ceremonial and symbolic twig and not with a cane. Such a person should be drummed out of the ranks and penalised by his party cadre. But it does not happen.
Read what he says and cringe. Indian Muslim men from other states are very excited that now they can dash off on the next flight to Srinagar and find a fair skinned girl. Then he narrows it down for good measure. BJP workers who are of the Muslim faith should be celebrating now that they can trot of and marry these newly liberated women.
Even if one concedes that India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi is far too preoccupied to personally look into each damaging and absurd utterance by his party men and women for the number of such gross statements would call for a full-time job, surely there is a disciplinary panel in BJP headquarters that can at least ensure there are consequences to such nonsense. After all, this man and his ilk make policy decisions in Uttar Pradesh and just for that reason must be held culpable for their value system.or lack of it.
- bikram@khaleejtimes.com


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