New Delhi: Congress leader Gurudas Kamat was on Saturday asked by the National Commission for Women to explain within a week his alleged offensive remarks against HRD minister Smriti Irani that have invited criticism.
Speaking in Rajasthan on Thursday, Kamat had referred to Irani as a "poncha lagane waali (cleaning woman)" while questioning the minister's credentials to hold the charge of the education portfolio.
"We have sent a showcause notice to Gurudas Kamat over his remarks about Smriti Irani. We have asked him to reply in a week's time," said Lalitha Kumaramangalam, chairperson of the National Commission for Women.
While campaigning for local body elections in the BJP-ruled state, Kamat had said, "I am from Mumbai and I have seen her doing cleaning job in a hotel there".
"Her family's financial condition was not good. Therefore, she worked in a hotel in Versova. Since, Smriti was only 10th pass, she cleaned tables in the hotel."
"There is a buzz everywhere that an uneducated sister has been elevated to the position of the education minister of this country," Kamat had said.
BJP leaders in Rajasthan had slammed Kamat's remarks, saying such "shallow statements" reflect the desperation of the Congress.