With the #MeToo campaign gaining momentum in India, Congress President Rahul Gandhi took to Twitter on Friday, 12 October, to express solidarity with the movement, saying, "It's about time everyone learns to treat women with respect and dignity. I'm glad the space for those who don't, is closing. The truth needs to be told loud and clear in order to bring about change."
This comes a day after the Congress president, during a press conference on the Rafale controversy, said that the #MeToo movement is a big one and that he would speak on it separately later.
Gandhi's comments come in the context of various well-known personalities in the media, entertainment and the political world being named for sexual harassment and abuse. Among them is former journalist and current Minister of State (MoS) for External Affairs, MJ Akbar, who has been accused of sexual harassment by multiple women.
The Congress has demanded Akbar's resignation over the allegations levelled against him.
On Thursday, Union Textiles Minister Smriti Irani said, “It is an extremely important time in our society that more and more women are getting support to speak out and I feel that our legislature and judiciary are equipped enough to deliver justice. I hope all these women get the due justice they deserve."
When asked about the accusations against MJ Akbar, Irani said that it is for the person concerned to issue a statement on the same.
“I will only say this that women don’t go to work to be harassed, they go to live their dreams and earn a respectable living. So I will say today that it must be very difficult for them to come out and tell whatever happened in their professional life.”Smriti Irani, Union Textiles Minister