Modi woos woman power, takes pot-shots at Rahul and Governor

ModiWomenNEW DELHI: After corporates and youth, it was the turn of woman power that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi today sought to woo in his bid to reach out to audiences nationwide in a speech that also had digs at Rahul Gandhi and the woman Governor in his state.

Women’s entrepreneurship, empowerment and equality for the fair sex were the themes during his hour-long interaction organized by the FICCI Ladies Organization in which a number of entrepreneurs, including FICCI President Naina Lal Kidwai, were present.

Observing that 50 per cent women alone could do a lot to bring economic development in the country, Modi cited examples of women in tribal areas and the dairy movement which made Amul an internationally known brand.

“But even today women are not part of the economic decision-making process. We have to change this. Bring them into the decision making process,” Modi said in a speech that was repeatedly cheered by the women audience.

The Chief Minister, however, did not leave the opportunity to have a go at Rahul Gandhi, who could potentially be pitted against him in the Prime Ministerial race, and the state governor, a woman, over non-clearance of a women’s reservation bill.

Talking of women’s entrepreneurship, he referred to a Jasubehn, whose pizzas could beat even known international brands, in Gujarat.

“But before our friends from the media go there to find out if Jasubehn is like Kalavati, I would like to tell them she died five years back. Her pizzas, however, still have a big market,” Modi said.

This was a barb aimed at Rahul Gandhi who had in a speech in Parliament referred to Kalavati, the widow of a poor farmer who had committed suicide in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra a few years ago.

Criticizing Gujarat Governor Kamla Beniwal, the chief minister said the Assembly had passed a Bill for reserving 50 per cent seats for women in local bodies in urban and rural areas but it has still not got her assent.

“It is my misfortune that despite being a woman she has not given her assent,” he said. -PTI

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