Speaker of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly, Hriday Narayan Dixit sparked outrage on Sunday by claiming that Rakhi Sawant would have been better than Mahatma Gandhi if one could become great by simply wearing clothes scantily. After receiving backlash on social media, Dixit has now made a clarification.
Speaking at the ‘prabuddh varg sammelan’ (meeting of intellectuals) organised by the BJP in Unnao district on Sunday, Dixit said: ‘In our opinion, no one has become an intellectual by writing a book on any topic. If that was the case for so many years, I have read at least 6,000 books.’
He further said, ‘Gandhiji used to dress scantily. He used to wrap just a dhoti. The country called him Bapu. If somebody could become great just by taking their clothes off, then Rakhi Sawant would have become greater than Mahatma Gandhi.’
The divisive comments quickly went viral on social media, prompting a storm of condemnation. Dixit quickly responded with a series of tweets clarifying his position. ‘Some friends in social media are showing the clip of a video of my speech with an otherwise meaning. This was the part of my speech at the ‘prabuddh sammelan’ in Unnao, in which the moderator of the ‘sammelan’ introduced me saying that ‘I am an enlightened writer’,’ he tweeted.
‘I took this point forward saying that no one becomes an intellectual by writing some books. Mahatma Gandhi used to dress scantily. The country called him ‘Bapu’. But that does not mean Rakhi Sawant will become a Gandhi-ji,’ Dixit said, adding, ‘Friends, take my speech in the right context.’