Patna: Bihar Social Welfare Minister Leshi Singh on Thursday sought an apology from actor-turned-politician Hema Malini for her controversial remark on the widows of Vrindavan.
Hema, a Member of Parliament from Mathura, had said that the widows from West Bengal and Bihar should not crowd Vrindavan, the holy city in Uttar Pradesh home to thousands of destitute women.
"Hema Malini's remarks have insulted the women of the country. Her despicable comment has hurt everybody," Leshi Singh told a news agency.
Bihar, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh have always welcomed people from outside and this was very much manifested by the fact that she won from Mathura in the Lok Sabha poll, she said.
Vrindavan, the land of Lord Krishna where widows from across the country throng, belongs to everybody and nobody should be barred from coming to the place, Singh said.
"She has been a loving artiste all through but by making such a statement Malini has attracted displeasure of people. She should tender an apology to the widows immediately," the minister said.
"If they (widows) are not from here, there is no need for them to come here from other states. There are many famous temples in Bengal and Bihar too," where they can stay, said Hema, at Mathura yesterday.
On a visit to her parliamentary constituency Mathura, of which Vrindavan is a part of, she said there are already 40,000 widows in Vrindavan and there was no room for more.
Malini today sought to defend her remarks, saying she said this in the context of how the widows were being ignored in their home states and government not doing enough for them.