A Madhya Pradesh Cabinet minister believes protecting girls is the primary responsibility of the parents and not the government.
Tribal Development Minister Vijay Shah told girls seeking a hostel facility in Alirajpur that their parents will have to give a written undertaking easing the government of the burden to protect them.
SC/ST boys who can’t get admission in hostels rent private accommodation and the government pays the rent and electricity charges.
Seeking a similar facility, a group of girls approached the minister at an ABVP function on Sunday, but were told that the government won’t be able to promise their safety.
Shah’s comment evoked strong reactions from the Opposition as also the National Commission for Women whose chairperson Mamta Sharma was in the Madhya Pradesh capital on Monday. “No government can unburden itself of the responsibility to protect women and girls,’’ said PCC chief Kantilal Bhuria, demanding that the minister be sacked.
The Opposition pointed to the recovery of the mutilated body of an eight-year-old girl from near state Home Minister Umashankar Gupta’s official residence on Monday as a sign of deteriorating law and order situation. The girl had left her home on Sunday to visit a mela but never returned. When residents noticed a dog carrying what looked like a limb they raised an alarm.