After being cornered by a united Opposition in the Kerala Assembly over his alleged anti-women remarks, Electricity Minister M.M. Mani on Tuesday cried foul and said that he didn't insult women. Mani, while addressing a public meeting in Idukki district on April 22, allegedly said that Pengal Otrumai (women tea plantation workers) were into 'drinks and much else'.
On Tuesday, the Opposition moved an adjournment motion in the Assembly. Mani, while putting forth his stand before the assembly, denied that he had insulted women in his speech.
'I have not used the word 'women' in the speech. It was a 17-minute-speech and if it is played full then people will understand the reality,' said Mani.
He maintained, 'I have not insulted Pengal Otrumai and the present protest cannot be called as Pengal Otrumai protest as there were only six persons in the protest.'
He held some Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders and media professionals responsible for insulting him and defaming his party.
'Media has edited the speech as some media persons are against me,' alleged Mani. 'Some BJP leaders also tried to protest against me but did not get people. They are trying to insult me and my party,' said Mani. He said he was born and brought up in plantation area and doesn't know to speak in a polished language.
'When I am speaking I do not know to hide what is in my mind. I have women in the home and at my workplace. They all know the respect that I have for them.'
Angered by Mani's remarks, the women plantation workers launched a protest on Sunday afternoon. The BJP's Kerala unit observed a black day in Idukki district and demanded Mani's resignation.