The story behind #BeAMan and #MisogynistRahul

After Congress President Rahul Gandhi took a jibe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying in “our culture respect for women begins at home”, the BJP on Thursday responded on social media with a hasthtag ‘#MisogynistRahul’.

Sitharaman had spoken on behalf of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and defended the Rafale deal in the Lok Sabha, countering questions raised by Congress and other opposition parties.

The Congress scion on Wednesday while addressing a rally in Jaipur, Rajasthan said that Modi had got a woman to defend him in Parliament on the Rafale fighter jet deal. He was referring to Sitharaman’s speech in Lok Sabha last week.

“The watchman with a 56-inch chest ran away and told a mahila, Sitharaman ji, to defend him. ‘I won’t be able to defend myself, defend me.’ For two-and-a-half hours, the woman could not defend him. I had asked a straight question — answer yes or no — but she couldn’t answer,” Rahul said.

PM Modi responded by accusing Rahul Gandhi of insulting “India’s first woman defence minister”.

“For the first time, a daughter of the country has become defence minister. Our defence minister silenced all the opposition parties in parliament (on Rafale) and exposed their lies. They were so stunned that now they are insulting a woman defence minister. They are insulting India’s women power,” the PM said at a rally in Agra.

Reacting to the prime minister’s scathing criticism, Gandhi, in his tweet, said: “With all due respect Modi Ji, in our culture respect for women begins at home.”

Criticising Rahul’s remarks, National Commission for Women chairperson Rekha Sharma said he needed to respect women.

“We have asked for an explanation from Rahul Gandhi for why he said what he said. The statement was pathetic, sexist and misogynistic. That’s why we have sent him a notice. He has to explain what he means when he is trying to talk low of women,” she told ANI.

Besides PM Modi’s response to Rahul Gandhi’s comment, Union ministers Smriti Irani and Sushma Swaraj also slammed Gandhi on Twitter with a hashtag #MisogynistRahul.

With many ministers and commoners criticising Rahul for his sexist comments, #BeAMan became one of the top trends on twitter on Thursday. Check out some tweets here:

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