Kochi: Even while Kerala`s ruling CPI-M has publicly censured State Power Minister MM Mani for his "loose tongue" and the Congress-led UDF have been demanding his resignation for his remarks on women plantation workers, the Kerala High Court on Friday spoke tough, noting it was a grave mistake on the part of Mani to use such words.
A division bench hearing a public interest litigation asked the Idukki police chief to submit all the details including a video and audio clip of the speech made by Mani on April 22 at a public meeting in the district, where he made disparaging remarks on hapless plantation workers.
The state government counsel told the court that Mani has never spoken against women but instead against the manner in which the media has been doing their job, but the court promptly dismissed the argument.
In a related development, soon after the HC made these remarks, police in Idukki`s Rajakaddu began proceedings on two petitions filed by Youth Congress workers against Mani for his rash and indecent remarks against a Sub-Collector and the women plantation workers.
Police took statements from several people who had heard Mani`s controversial speech.
Mani, however, told reporters on Friday at his home town near Idukki that he has never made any indecent remarks against women and the party action was because his statements created a controversy.
"I fully accept the action of the party. I am not going to change my style because if I do that, then I will not be there at all," he said.
Meanwhile, the women plantation workers sitting on an indefinite fast, which entered the fourth day, at Munnar, reiterated that their demand remains the same and until and unless Mani comes and apologises to them and then quits, they will not call off their protests.
The women workers have already got support from the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party, whose top leaders have visited the protesters.