Mulayam Singh denounces veil system, says it's an evil tradition
Lucknow: Samajwadi Party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav today kicked up a controversy by dubbing the practice of "purdah" (veil) as an "evil tradition", saying it should be scrapped as it hindered progress of women.
"This system did not exist in the distant past. Did Sita or Draupadi ever don a veil? Some circumstances cropped up later because of which women had to use veil," he said at a national convention organised by SP's women wing at the party office here.
"We have to work to remove inferiority complex in women. The 'purdah system' is a wrong tradition and should be eradicated," he said.
"Now women have donned uniform. It is time for you to decide about this veil system...Such evil traditions should end," he said.
The SP chief said socialist leader Ram Manohar Lohia had always advocated equal participation of women in all spheres of life.
Yadav said that in the present time women should be given equal opportunity and they should march shoulder to shoulder with men folk.
He regretted that women were the most exploited lot even today and discrimination against them continued inside their homes.
Using the occasion to slam the Centre, Yadav said, "Some persons lie that they have done a lot for women. You can become Prime Minister and get votes through cleverness and shrewdness, but the country cannot be hoodwinked by these tactics."