The Telegraph
Tuesday , July 1 , 2014
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I apologise unreservedly: Trinamul MP Paul says sorry for rape comment

Calcutta, July 1 (PTI): Trinamul Congress member of Parliament Tapas Paul on Tuesday tendered an unconditional apology for his threat to kill CPI(M) workers and having their women raped after he was asked by an embarrassed party leadership to do so following widespread outrage.

Paul, also a Bengali film actor, said in making such comments he had let down his constituents and the people of Bengal.

”Some remarks made by me in the heat and dust of the election campaign have caused dismay and consternation. I apologise unreservedly for them,” Paul said in a written apology to the Trinamul Congress and the media.

”I have no excuses to offer. It was a gross error of judgement and deeply insensitive. It should not have happened. And I assure you it will not happen again. Once more, a humble apology,” he said.

”Whatever the provocation -- and there was an attempt at provocation - those comments should never have been made,” the letter said.

He said in making the comments he had let down the people of Bengal. “I have let down my party, the Trinamul Congress, and my political colleagues, I have let down my family, including my wife and children and my parents, and my friends.

”I apologise to all of them, and particularly to all women in our society and to those in the media who highlighted the issue,” the two-time Lok Sabha MP from Krishnagar said.

On Monday, Paul was shown in a video footage on a vernacular TV news channel saying, “If any CPI-M man is present here. Listen to me. If you ever touch any Trinamul Congress worker or their families at Choumaha, you have to pay for this. Don't try to act smart with me. I am smarter than you...”

“... Earlier, you guys have bullied me on various occasions. If you insult the mothers and daughters of Trinamul workers. Then I won't spare you. I will let loose my boys in your homes and they will commit rape. I will teach each of you a lesson,” the MP had warned.

The Union Home Ministry has sought a detailed report from the state government about Pal's comments, a Union Home Ministry official said.

”The MHA has sought a detailed report from the state government regarding the comments made by Trinamul Congress MP Tapas Paul. We are expecting the detailed report within a day or two,” Union home ministry spokesperson K.S. Dhatwalia told PTI over phone.

“We have asked them to give complete information about his speech, where it was made, how many people were present and its repercussions,” the ministry official said.

Earlier, Paul had been asked by the TMC leadership to explain his conduct in writing.

Party general secretary Mukul Roy said that the explanation was part of a process that has been initiated.