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Sunny Side Up: Kutti in hot water

a year ago

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The Women Parliamentarians Forum headed by State Minister Dr. Sudharshini Fernandopulle last week took a firm stand against Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) MP Janaka Tissa Kuttiarachchi over alleged sexist as well as slanderous comments made against Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) MP Rohini Kavirathna in Parliament. Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena also expressed his regret over the incident last week. Dr. Fernandopulle, in writing, requested the Speaker to take serious note of the verbal abuse of both Government and Opposition female parliamentarians in the House. Referring to the alleged incident of verbal abuse of a female MP in the Chamber, she had noted the continuous abuse of the female MPs in the House and that it created a bad precedent to a culture that values democracy. Dr. Fernandopulle had further noted that the abuse faced by a female MP elected to the House by the public to formulate laws is an overall indication of the deteriorating values in society. She had called on the Speaker to take a firm stance with regard to the recent incident and to also ensure that such incidents were not faced by women parliamentarians in the House. Dismissing claims that his recent statements made in Parliament were of sexist nature, Kuttiarachchi said the people who had manipulated his statement about vegetables had vulgar minds. “Is it wrong to quote vegetables and fruits in Parliament? I only mentioned the names of vegetables that came to my mind at that time, and SJB MP Rohini Kavirathna and Sajith Premadasa’s wife’s name were the names that popped into mind at that time,” Kuttiarachchi had said in response to the mounting opposition to his statement. Kuttiarachchi had allegedly made a sexist remark against Kavirathna, who questioned the rapidly increasing prices of essential goods during the budget debate previously.