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Backlash over insensitive remark forces Kerala Womens panel chief to resign
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Backlash over insensitive remark forces Kerala Women's panel chief to resign

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Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Women's Commission Chairperson MC Josephine has resigned after her 'callous' remark to domestic violence victim on live TV which had unleashed a storm of social media protests, with women activists, human right organisations and opposition parties wading into the controversy.

Josephine was participating in a live TV programme on Manorama News where women in Kerala can call and talk to the chairperson directly about any issues and abuse they are experiencing.

On June 23, a woman and her mother from Kochi called the programme and complained. The woman said that she has been facing domestic violence since 2014 when she got married. Josephine, who seemed irritated since the beginning of the phone call, was insensitive and rude to the victim.

The victim was also told to consult a lawyer and go to family court. The chairperson of the Women's Commission added that the victim can file a complaint at the organisation but hinted that it will be useless because the husband lives abroad, said the TNM report.

At first, the woman's mother spoke to Josephine but she insisted that the victim must speak to her. Even though the victim came to the phone, she appeared unprepared for the difficult conversation.

The chairperson asked the victim if her husband and mother-in-law were ill-treating her. When the victim answered yes, she was asked whether a police complaint had been filed. The woman answered she did not inform anyone. To this, Josephine said, "then you suffer", reported The News Minute. She kept complaining about the background noise too.

Josephine is said to have been rude but patient to some other callers as well. As the clip of the insensitive remark went viral on social media, many have demanded that she resign from the position of chairperson. She had been at the centre of controversy six months ago for treating a complaint from a bedridden 87-year-old woman as unnecessary.

After the clip went viral, Josephine made a statement saying that she did not abuse the woman and denied having said "then you suffer", said TNM. She added that common people do not understand the matter properly and she needs to make her point strongly.

The chairperson said that many women call her on a daily basis and she also goes through severe pressure as a human being.

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TAGS:M C Josephine Kerala Womens Commission Pinarayi Vijayan 
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