Author Chetan Bhagat, Twitter's favourite punching bag for his outspoken comments on a wide range of subjects, has done it again.
A week after getting criticized for saying that the odd-even rule for cars that the Delhi government has decided to implement from next year to fight pollution on war footing will halt productivity, the 'Two States' author today had a problem with the government's exemption to women passengers.
At a time when we need economic growth and jobs, somebody decides to get half the vehicles off the roads and destroy productivity. Nice.— Chetan Bhagat (@chetan_bhagat) December 5, 2015
This morning, Bhagat tweeted this:
So odd-even rule doesn't apply to women only cars, for safety. Because men, you know, can never be robbed, attacked, feel unsafe or killed.— Chetan Bhagat (@chetan_bhagat) December 10, 2015
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has said that women drivers as well as vehicles carrying only women passengers or a patient are to be exempt from the odd-even rule that is to be implemented from January 1, 2016.
To tackle Delhi's acute pollution problem, Delhi government last week had decided that all private cars, barring taxis and auto-rickshaws, with registration numbers ending with an odd figure (1, 3, 5, 7 or 9) will be allowed on the roads only on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays were marked for vehicles with even number plates (2, 4, 6, 8 or 0).
Bhagat clearly does not approve. According to his tweet, men may get 'attacked, robbed or killed' if they use public transport on days when they can't take their cars out.
The author also thinks that men will soon find a solution to break the rule:
Women exempt from odd-even rule. Soon, men in Delhi are going to wrap dupattas around their heads and driving their cars. Go Delhi go!— Chetan Bhagat (@chetan_bhagat) December 10, 2015
Many criticized Bhagat for his statement:
So now @chetan_bhagat is fighting for men's right to carbon emissions! Not kidding!— swati chaturvedi (@bainjal) December 10, 2015
@chetan_bhagat So u must be against women only coaches in metro as well? And ladies seats in buses?— Yash Chopra (@yasshh) December 10, 2015
@chetan_bhagat Hi Chetan! Going Lil overboard? U may be against oddeven but this is too insensitive. Women go thru much more than man do!— Bharat Kavade (@bharat_kavade) December 10, 2015
Now, while many are pointing out why Bhagat's statement doesn't make much sense, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal is quietly retweeting the handles Bhagat calls "trolls".
Dear CM, instead of retweeting my trolls, why not respectfully discuss apprehensions people may have on a scheme? pic.twitter.com/Z7XXcw6Yhz— Chetan Bhagat (@chetan_bhagat) December 10, 2015
Of course, the writer isn't too happy about that either.
Dear CM, when you retweet trolls making personal attacks on me,you tacitly encourage them. And that's what they are doing right now. Thanks.— Chetan Bhagat (@chetan_bhagat) December 10, 2015
However, just as Kejriwal RTed the opinions of Twitter users slamming the author for failing to understand the plight of millions of women vulnerable to abuse, Bhagat himself retweeted tweets in support of him.