Patna: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has expressed his regret for his remarks on population control and marital relations that sparked a backlash from various quarters. He said that he did not intend to hurt anyone’s sentiments and that he respects women a lot.
On Wednesday, Nitish Kumar faced protests from BJP women MLAs who blocked his entry to the Assembly and demanded an apology from him. He also faced criticism from the National Commission for Women (NCW), which asked him to apologize immediately.
Nitish Kumar, who was speaking on the issue of caste census in the Assembly on Tuesday, made some comments on the role of women’s education in population control and the physical relationship of a married couple. He said that women should be educated so that they can decide how many children they want and when they want them. He also said that men should not force their wives to have more children and that they should respect their wishes.
However, his comments were seen as insensitive and offensive by many, who accused him of making sexist and patriarchal remarks. They also questioned his understanding of the complex factors that influence population growth and family planning.
Nitish Kumar, who is known for his initiatives for women’s empowerment, such as providing bicycles and uniforms to schoolgirls and reserving 50% seats for women in local bodies, said that his statement was misinterpreted and taken out of context. He said that he was only trying to explain the decline in fertility rate in Bihar and the need for population stabilization.
He said that he apologizes with folded hands to anyone who felt hurt by his statement and that he condemns his own words. He also said that he has always worked for the upliftment of women and that he values their dignity and rights. He said that he hopes that his apology will end the controversy and that he will continue to work for the welfare of the people of Bihar.