MP health minister’s remark on impotency draws flak from Congress
Congress leader Bhupendra Gupta called his statement “indecent”.india Updated: Mar 16, 2018 21:22 IST
Madhya Pradesh health minister Rustam Singh’s statement outside the assembly on Friday that only a wife can tell whether a person is impotent has kicked off a controversy.
He was responding to a query from journalists outside the state assembly regarding an unusual written question during the budget session on Friday that sought to know if the state government had prepared a plan to tackle decreasing sperm count and increasing cases of impotency among men in the state.
The question was asked by Congress MP from Rewa district Sunderlal Tiwari.
When journalists asked him about it, the health minister said he was surprised that the legislator had come to know that sperm count was decreasing and cases of impotence were rising among men in Madhya Pradesh.
“Shukranu kam ho rahey hain, ye to kewal doctor hi bata sakta hai. Unhoney kaha ki napunsakta barh rahi hai, ye kewal us patee ki patni hi bata sakti hai (Doctors can confirm about decreasing sperm count, while a person’s wife can tell whether the person is impotent or not),” he told reporters.
The Congress MLA also sought to know if the state government had any plan to identify such persons and what was their number in Rewa district, his home turf.
In his written reply, Singh said there was no such plan, but added that the state government identified childless couples during health camps held for women.
Singh said they had identified 126 persons in Rewa who were childless and added that the government provided financial assistance for treatment to below poverty line childless couples.
To the query on how many districts had advanced tests and treatment facilities related to impotence, sperm count and so on, the health minister said such facilities were not available in district hospitals.
Reacting to Rustam Singh’s statement, Sunderlal Tiwari told reporters, “What can I say when our health minister makes such a statement that only wife can tell whether the person is impotent? There are different medical tests that can tell whether a person is impotent,” he said.
Congress state chief spokesperson KK Mishra said Singh’s statement was in poor taste. “He should not have said such a thing. It is actually doctors who can tell through diagnosis whether a person is impotent,” he added.