New Delhi: At a time when the #MeToo has found its way into politics as well and has seen a couple of heads roll a Union Minister has uttered an extremely controversial statement which might invite backlash, said reports on Thursday. Union Minister of State for Shipping and Finance Pon Radhakrishnan, responding to a reporter, said the #MeToo movement was started by “people with perverted minds” and wondered if it was fair to level accusations over incidents that happened years ago. (Also read: Akbar’s Defamation Case to be Heard on Oct 31)
“If someone makes an allegation that such a thing happened…..when the incident happened we were playing together while in class 5….Would it be fair? “This (MeToo movement) is the result of the behaviour of some people who have perverted minds,” Radhakrishnan reportedly said on Wednesday. Noting that the #MeToo movement had sullied the image of the country and women, he wondered if it would be right for men to start “making similar accusations like them”.”That will be such a big insult….Will it be acceptable?” Radhakrishnan asked.
The minister spewed venom in response to a pointed question on how the movement has swept across the entertainment and media industries and has seen Union Minister MJ Akbar and also NSUI national president Fairoz Khan step down. Akbar, who edited many mainstream publications before joining politics, resigned as Union Minister of State for External Affairs on Wednesday after 20 of his former women journalist colleagues accused him of sexual harassment.
The #MeToo movement has gathered steam over the past few days with a number of women speaking about sexual harassment at workplace and outed their alleged tormentors. Several celebrities, including actors Nana Patekar, Alok Nath, filmmaker Vikas Behl, Sajid Khan, singer Kailash Kher and Tamil lyricist Vairamuthu are among the few who have been called out by their alleged victims.