Jaitley said on Thursday that the gory rape and murder of a 23-year old paramedic student in New Delhi had cost the Indian tourism sector billions as the number of tourists visiting the country had fallen down drastically due to the incident.

While addressing a conference of state tourism ministers in the capital on Thursday, Jaitley had said, "One small incident of rape in Delhi was enough to cost of million dollars in terms of lower number of tourists. We have national responsibility and God has given us everything which tourists want to see, we just have to catalyse that process and make sure of that we take right step."

The National Commission for Women (NCW) and the Congress party condemned Jaitley’s statement.

NCW member Nirmala Samant branded Jaitley’s comments over the Nirbhaya gang-rape incident as ‘shocking and very unfortunate’.

The Congress said Jaitley’s ‘horrendous statement’ was ‘idiotic’ and asked him to apologise to the women of the country.

Meanwhile, the father of the gang-rape victim on Friday slammed Jaitley over his controversial comments, saying the Union Minister’s remarks were over his daughter’s rape were ‘irresponsible’.

The mother of the gang-rape victim said she was deeply hurt by Jaitley’s comments, as per media reports.

The Nirbhaya gan-grape victim’s mother added that Jaitley’s job as a Finance Minster of the country was to bring revenue to the country and not blame it on the ill-fated incident, according to reports.

 

                                                                           Highlights
Union Minister Arun Jaitley describes Nirbhaya gang-rape ‘small incident’
Jaitley’s ‘small incident’ comment condemned by NCW, Congress
Nirbahaya’s father says Jaitley’s comments ‘irresponsible’
Gang-rape victim’s mother deeply hurt by Jaitley’s comments
NCW says Jaitley’s statement ‘shocking and very unfortunate’
Congress asks Jaitley to apologise to women of the nation over his ‘horrendous statement’
Jaitley says he regrets his statement,  adds his comments construed as insensitive

Jaitley’s insensitive comments over the December 16 gang-rape incident have also been loathed by Twitteratis on the social networking website.

The Press Information Bureau (PIB), which takes care of government publicity, had removed the word ‘small’ from Jaitley’s speech transcript.

However, such a move failed to pay any dividends as Jaitley’s controversial comments sparked a huge row in the political as well social media circles.

Jaitley, however later gave a clarification over his statement, saying he regret it but claimed that his comments were manipulated as ‘insensitive’.

The Union Minister added that he has always spoken vociferously against the crimes on women and there is no question of trivializing the matter.

On the night of December 16, 2012, six men had gang-raped and killed a paramedic student in a bus after luring her and her 28-year-old male friend, who was also assaulted, on board the vehicle, which was later found to be plying illegally on Delhi roads.

Several protest marches were held in the capital after this horrific incident and it was perhaps the first time ever in our nation’s history that safety of women had spiraled into a national debate.

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