Baba Ramdev’s comments against Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi are downright despicable. (“Ramdev is sorry, but FIR filed,” April 27) Ramdev has added yet another sordid chapter to the vicious nature of the poll campaign. His distasteful jibes at Rahul Gandhi and in effect Dalit women represent a blatant attempt to cast aspersions on the Dalit community as a whole. The remarks coming from a spiritual and yoga master like Ramdev point to a feudal mindset that can be associated with the Sangh Parivar. The Bharatiya Janata Party’s defence seems to be an attempt at damage control. The Election Commission should impose a blanket ban on Baba Ramdev campaigning for elections.
J. Anantha Padmanabhan,
It appears that the yoga that Baba Ramdev teaches has not taught him any self-restraint. His remark is an insult to women in general and Dalits in particular. As is the wont for many politicians, he too has made a U-turn claiming that what he said was misconstrued. The fact that the BJP did not condemn his statement whole-heartedly means it is inwardly supporting it. I yearn for an election where candidates and their supporters will put forth their own blueprint for the development of the country, and nothing else.
Baba Ramdev’s comment verges on the outrageous and exposes the hollowness of the saffron brigade’s espousal of ‘cultural nationalism’. Clearly, it degrades and demeans Dalit women. The implication of the comment is that Dalit women have no morals. Rather than reprimanding him for hurting Dalit feelings and asking him to speak and behave in an appropriate manner, the BJP seeks to justify the comment by alleging that it was distorted.
G. David Milton,