Activists and political leaders on Sunday pressed for the resignation of National Commission of Women (NCW) chairperson Mamata Sharma for her controversial remark that women should not feel offended when they are called "sexy".
"It's shocking that Sharma is commenting on how women and girls should receive the word 'sexy'. We're outraged and shocked," women's organisations in Rajasthan said in a joint statement.
"It is a ridiculous statement. Even the law says that sexually coloured remarks are tantamount to harassing women. Such irresponsible remarks promote violence against women," said Kavita Srivastava, general secretary of the People's Union for Civil Liberties.
She said Sharma must take "moral responsibility" for her "irresponsible" remark and step down from her post.
Sharma had said at a function in Jaipur on Saturday that "sexy" meant "beautiful and charming", so, it should not be taken in a negative sense.
Rejecting the demand for her resignation, Sharma sought to downplay the controversy, saying she had made the remark in the 'broader context' as she was addressing the youth.
"But the same does not imply for strangers or roadside Romeos who use the word 'sexy' to tease girls. That is condemnable," she said.
BJP spokesperson Nirmala Seetharaman said the statement should not have been made even if there was no malafide intention involved. "I think any statement which leads to the commodification of women should not be said even if there is no malafide intention. Caution must be exercised while making statements, especially by women who occupy positions of significance," she added.