A Madhya Pradesh minister has landed at the centre of a controversy by stating that giving protection to girl students wanting to stay in hostels is the responsibility of their parents and not of the government.

In remarks that evoked sharp criticism, Tribal & Scheduled Castes Welfare Minister Kunwar Vijay Shah asked parents of girl students to give in writing that they will take care of their security only after which the government will consider building hostels for them.

“Girls might face problems if they stay alone. In view of this, girl students and their parents have to give in writing that they will take care of their security and then only the government will decide to build hostels for them as well,” he said drawing sharp criticism.

The minister said this while speaking on the concluding day of the All-India Vidyarthi Parishad’s state level scheduled tribe programme.

The Government will bear hostel expenses, but the protection will be the responsibility of the girls and their parents, he said adding that the girls should return to their hostels by 8 p.m.

Mr. Shah’s remarks came under fire with JD (U) chief Sharad Yadav saying the responsibility for providing security was squarely with the government and it cannot pass on the buck.

Madhya Pradesh PCC chief Kantilal Buria lashed out at the minister saying the State Government is answerable and cannot shirk its responsibility.

NCW chairperson Mamta Sharma also hit out at Mr. Shah, saying, “I wonder if the job of political leaders ends after securing the votes of women. If providing security to girls is not the job of the Government, then whose job is it?” - PTI