Arguing that UPA-Left Presidential candidate Pratibha Patil has made no "political or social contribution", Bharatiya Jan Shakti chief Uma Bharati on Sunday said she could not be fielded for the country's highest post simply for being a woman.
"What contribution has she made socially and politically? I think merely being a woman is not enough for a Presidential candidate. You need other qualities, which Pratibha Patil lacks," Bharati told a press conference in Jaipur.
She said there were other women leaders in the Congress, some of whom were "competent and honest, like Margaret Alva and Meira Kumar and have always proved their mettle" for the top job.
Asked about her opposition towards Patil for the post, she likened the UPA's selection to former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi fielding Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed for the post of President in the 1970s.
"I am afraid the UPA is repeating the mistake. It is really a dangerous indication and I am frightened after UPA chose her as its Presidential candidate," Bharati said referring to Gandhi's declaration of Emergency in 1975 through a Presidential ordinance.
Asked about Vice-President Bhairon Singh Shekhawat's candidature, she said: "It is too early to comment since he has not yet filed his nomination. Let him do so first, then we will discuss his chances."