MP minister Babulal Gaur says rape "sometimes right, sometimes wrong"

NEW DELHI Thu Jun 5, 2014 6:08pm IST

Demonstrators hold placards during a candlelight vigil to mark the first death anniversary of the Delhi gang rape victim in New Delhi December 29, 2013. REUTERS/Anindito Mukherjee/Files

Demonstrators hold placards during a candlelight vigil to mark the first death anniversary of the Delhi gang rape victim in New Delhi December 29, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Anindito Mukherjee/Files

Related Topics

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Babulal Gaur has described rape as a social crime, saying "sometimes it's right, sometimes it's wrong", in the latest controversial remarks by an Indian politician about rape.

Akhilesh Yadav, chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, where two cousins aged 12 and 14 were raped and hanged last week, has faced criticism for failing to visit the scene and for accusing the media of hyping the story.

Gaur, who is from Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), said on Thursday that the crime of rape can only be considered to have been committed if it is reported to police.

"This is a social crime which depends on men and women. Sometimes it's right, sometimes it's wrong," said Gaur, the home minister responsible for law and order in BJP-run Madhya Pradesh.

"Until there's a complaint, nothing can happen," Gaur told reporters.

Gaur also expressed sympathy with Mulayam Singh Yadav, head of the regional Samajwadi Party. In the recent election, Mulayam criticised legal changes that foresee the death penalty for gang rape, saying: "Boys commit mistakes: Will they be hanged for rape?"

The BJP dismissed Gaur's comments as an expression of his personal views, and not the party's.

Modi, who was sworn in as prime minister last week after a landslide election victory, has so far remained silent over the double killing in the village of Katra Shahadatganj, around half a day's drive east of New Delhi.

The father and uncle of one of the victims said they tried to report the crime to local police but had been turned away. Three men have been arrested over the killings. Two policemen were held on suspicion of trying to cover up the crime.

Although a rape is reported in India every 21 minutes on average, law enforcement failures mean that such crimes - a symptom of pervasive sexual and caste oppression - are often not reported or properly investigated, human rights groups say.

More sex crimes have come to light in recent days. A woman in a nearby district of Uttar Pradesh was gang-raped, forced to drink acid and strangled to death. Another was shot dead in northeast India while resisting attackers, media reports said.

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has said he was "especially appalled" by the rape and murder of the two girls.

"We say no to the dismissive, destructive attitude of, 'Boys will be boys'," he said in a statement this week that made clear his contempt for the language used by Mulayam Singh Yadav.

(Reporting by Sruthi Gottipati; Editing by Jeremy Laurence)

FILED UNDER:
We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (3)
BlockedByFP wrote:
Why is there no follow up question as to when it’s right?

Jun 05, 2014 6:25pm IST  --  Report as abuse
justadad1 wrote:
India as a country is far too big and far too important to be run by a collection of absolute morons.

Jun 05, 2014 2:20am IST  --  Report as abuse
kamalkumarboro wrote:
May be the minister wanted to say that sometimes allegations of rape are found to be genuine and sometimes allegations are fake. Reminds me of the misuse of 498A and their victims.

Jun 07, 2014 3:14pm IST  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Sino-Indian Ties

REUTERS SHOWCASE

India-China Relations

India-China Relations

India and China look to put knotty relations on new footing.  Full Article 

Importing Iron Ore

Importing Iron Ore

As mining curbs bite, India offers market to glut-hit iron ore.  Full Article 

Lower Output

Lower Output

IOC cuts refinery output as rains hit fuel demand - source.  Full Article 

Drug Approval

Drug Approval

Epirus, Ranbaxy win India approval for arthritis drug copy.  Full Article 

Farming and Technology

Farming and Technology

Climate smart farmers get tech savvy to save India's bread basket.  Full Article 

Rajan Speaks

Rajan Speaks

RBI chief Rajan says limiting reliance on foreign debt.  Full Article 

India-Vietnam Ties

India-Vietnam Ties

India tightens Vietnam defence, oil ties ahead of China Xi's visit.  Full Article 

Debt & Equity Deal

Debt & Equity Deal

KKR to lend $175 million to GMR Infrastructure - source.  Full Article 

Preparing for IPO

Preparing for IPO

Alibaba boosts IPO as demand strengthens.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage