Following Tamil Nadu governor Banwarilal Purohit's apology to a woman journalist for patting her cheek without consent, a derogatory post shared by Bharatiya Janata Party leader S Ve Shekher against women mediapersons in the state has triggered massive outrage.
On Thursday, S Ve Shekher shared a Facebook post written by Thirumalai Sa., which didn’t name the journalist in the incident. However, the headline of the post, which read ‘Madurai University, the Governor and a virgin girl’s cheek’ was S Ve Shekher’s own.
Several members of the media fraternity as well as senior political representatives have slammed the sexist post on social media.
Without naming the woman journalist in the incident, the post read: "I feel pity while looking at that woman journalist. She claims she was disturbed because the governor touched her. But when you read her tweets, it is understood that her intention was to target the Governor and Modi. It is actually the governor who has to wash his hands with Phenoyl after touching her. These (TN media persons) are cheap and disgusting creatures. Most people who work in the media in TN are usually Illiterate, cheap and don't have any general knowledge. This woman is not any different."
The post also went on to accuse all women journalists in Tamil Nadu of sleeping around.
"Recently this disgusting fact has come out through complaints that women cannot become reporters or anchors unless they sleep with top bosses. And with these faces, they come out to ask questions to the governor," the post stated.
The post was deleted following the furore it sparked, but not before several members of the media fraternity took to Twitter to condemn the post and Shekher.
I strongly condemn Mr S Ve Shekar for sharing a defaming and derogatory post against women journos in his FB page https://t.co/NoZvMPc1e7— Karthigaichelvan S (@karthickselvaa) April 20, 2018
What? Fu#%*$G misogynistic animals. How dare anyone make such a statement ? I doubt they’ll sing the same tune if it were their daughters. How do we change these patriarchal mindsets? Or rather where does it stem from? Mr Sekar, women are the epitome of creation. Know that.— Amitashh Pradhan (@amitashpradhan) April 19, 2018
Women are feeling more and more safe today and daily they hav to wake up seeing great thoughts and minds around. According to @SVESHEKHER qualification for a women to become a reporter In a media House is to sleep around with men. Feeling very Progressive #WTHSVeShekher— Induja Ragunathan (@R_Induja) April 19, 2018
After reading a post that @SVESHEKHER shared on his FB wall on women journalists, I think all women journalists should boycott him. And I want to ask women members of the BJP @VanathiBJP and @DrTamilisaiBJP why they think about such filth that he shares. #WTHSVeShekher— Dhanya Rajendran (@dhanyarajendran) April 19, 2018
The post shared by Shekher, which justified the Governor's action, stated that it was a part of “north Indian culture to hug” and "affectionately touch and bless people". It also openly targeted the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam.
"The functionaries of a dravidian party which has committed a thousand atrocities are now depicting a man whom lightly touched a woman's cheek as some kind of a lustful villain," stated the post.
Rajya Sabha MP Kanimozhi too flayed this post.
BJP member SVe.Shekar’s FB post on women in media is disgusting and deserves condemnation in strongest possible terms. His defence that he shared some one else’s FB post is a facade. Shekar’s FB post shows a despicable mindset.— Kanimozhi (கனிமொழி) (@KanimozhiDMK) April 20, 2018
Posting something derogatory & deleting it subsequently has become a habit among BJP leaders. Unless BJP high command takes firm action against https://t.co/C7zsSthUD9.Shekar it can only be construed that the BJP high command endorses these views.— Kanimozhi (கனிமொழி) (@KanimozhiDMK) April 20, 2018
Earlier this week, BJP leader H Raja's post on Kanimozhi calling her an illegitimate child saw reactions slamming Raja, including from state president Tamilisai Soundararajan.