I have full respect for women, Karnataka HM's new stance
"I am extremely pained by the fact that my statement with respect to the alleged molestation incident has been interpreted out of context and not taken in its entirety," he said
After drawing brickbats for his comments on the mass molestation in Bengaluru on New Year’s Eve, Karnataka Home Minister Dr. G. Parameshwara on Thursday said that his comments were distorted by the media.
Parameswara had initially implied that the blame for the molestation laid with the women victims.
"I am extremely pained by the fact that my statement with respect to the alleged molestation incident has been interpreted out of context and not taken in its entirety," he said, as reported by The News Minute.
He added that his statements had been in relation to public celebrations and not the incidents of molestation. “I said New Year celebration happens every year. I did not say molestation,” the Minister claimed.
“I have full respect for women. I have sisters, a mother, a wife,” the Minister said. He added that he had himself studied abroad, and insisted that he never said that he disrespected Western culture.
550 CCTVs for Bengaluru city in 2 months
He said the government has decided to install 550 CCTV cameras at various locations, especially in sensitive areas, to keep eye criminal activities in the city at an estimated cost of Rs. 39 crore in two months.
He said women force in the police would be increased from the existing 5 per cent to 20 per cent in the coming days.
“The police helpline No. 100 service is functioning 24x7 and as of now 15 phone lines are functioning. We are planning to increase the number of phone lines to 100 from the existing 15. The department has allocated Rs.4 crore for this purpose and the work will be completed in two months,’’ he said, as per a report in News Karnataka.
On the Kammanahalli molestation case, he said police were looking into CCTV footages.
Stating that Bengaluru was safe for women and children, he said the government was committed to take all steps to ensure the safety of women and all citizens of the city.
Meanwhile, Governor Vajubhai Vala has sought a report on the alleged molestation cases in the city. The home minister said the government would submit its report to the Governor soon.
Meanwhile, hundreds of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Mahila Morcha members on Thursday staged a dharna in Bengaluru protesting against Parameshwara’s controversial statement. Later the agitators tried to lay siege to Vidhana Soudha, but police took them into preventive custody.
Janata Dal (Secular) activists staged a dharna in front of Banaswadi police station demanding stringent action against those involved in molestation incidents. It may be recalled that BJP activists, led by Corporator of Kacharakanahalli ward, had staged a dharna on Wednesday in front of Banaswadi police station demanding police to take action against the culprits.