Union minister for women and child development Maneka Gandhi on Friday gave way to a huge controversy she told the Muslim Community at Turab Khani village in Sultanpur that she would not want to give them jobs if they do not vote for her.
While addressing a poll rally in the Muslim-dominated village, she claimed that she won’t like it if she wins without the support of the community.
“My feelings get hurt. If Muslims then come to me asking for work, then I will think let it be, how does it matter? After all, a job is a deal.” she said.
The three-minute speech has gone viral on social media and sparked outrage for its blatant communal content.
Leaving no room for doubt regarding the intention behind the statement, Gandhi further said that Muslim voters need to understand that it is a give and take relation.
“It is not that I will keep on giving without getting your support in elections in return,” she said, adding that “We are not the children of Mahatma Gandhi.”
She told the crowd to ask anyone in Pilibhit about the kind of work she did there and that if they still feel that she didn’t do enough, they can decide not to vote for her.
She kept emphasizing that she was bound to win the elections and it was the people who needed her, and not the other way round.
Congress leader Sanjay Jha hit out at her for the statement and termed it 'scandalous':
"#SCANDAL! Naukri ek sauda hai (Jobs are a deal)says #BJP's #ManekaGandhi. Dear Demographic Dividend India, now you know why India has an unemployment, #jobs crisis. For #BJP, providing jobs is a commercial deal; you have to help them first to get a job. A quid pro quo. It is a barter, give & take (sic).
Maneka had won the Lok Sabha elections from UP’s Pilibhit in 2014. However, this time she will fight from Sultanpur, while her son Varun Gandhi will fight from Pilibhit.