Zero tolerance on violence against women: Rahul Gandhi

Koraput: The All India Congress Committee (AICC) President Rahul Gandhi today said that there should be zero tolerance on violence against women in the country, adding that the Women Reservation Bill will be passed in Parliament if Congress is voted to power in the upcoming polls.

While interacting with the women during a convention on the occasion of International Women’s Day in Jeypore city here, Gandhi stated that he will ensure that the Women’s Reservation Bill is passed when Congress forms the government.

Gandhi also admired the “fighting spirit” of women and urged people to recommit themselves to break barriers that hinder the path to equality. “Fight for your space and don’t consider yourself less than anyone,” he said.

He also said that while around eight women are getting raped every day, only seven victims are getting justice per year.

“If Congress forms the government in Odisha, girls will get free education,” he added.

“Maternity-related deaths should be battled with information and access to high quality healthcare. There is a vast network of Self Help Groups in Odisha and we assure to help them with more bank loans. We should not only help farmers and women of Koraput, but we need to connect the youngsters of Koraput to the rest of the world,” said the AICC chief.

Later in the day while addressing a public meeting, Gandhi said, “Odisha is the poorest state despite abundance of resources as everything is being looted. Congress will appoint special officers in every panchayat, and set up financial corporation for women entrepreneurs.”

Rahul also assured, “If Congress comes to power, it will waive off farm loans, provide marriage kit to women, and also hike allowance for widows to Rs 2000.”

During the public meeting, Gandhi further targeted Naveen Patnaik-led Odisha government and termed it as Officer Raj.

In response to this, BJD Spokesperson Rabinarayan Nanda said, “Naveen Patnaik has been elected by the people and in this system, officers’ help is required in execution of several works. So it’s quite obvious that we are bound to take the help of the officers.”

Meanwhile, Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan criticised Rahul Gandhi over his statements on providing security to the women. “Empty vessels make more noise, so were the statements of Rahul Gandhi. The condition of women in Rae Bareli and Amethi reveals how far he is able to keep his promises. He only knows to deliver statements but has no intention to implement any of those.”