Kolkata: Trinamool Congress MP Tapas Paul, whose rape remarks sparked countrywide outrage, Tuesday tendered an unconditional apology to the party and the media, terming his comments a "gross error of judgment" and admitting they were "deeply insensitive".
In a letter addressed to the people with copies to the Trinamool's chairperson Mamata Banerjee, general secretary Mukul Roy, national spokesperson Derek O'Brien and the media, Pal pointed out "there was an attempt at provocation".
"Some remarks made by me in the heat and dust of the election campaign have caused dismay and consternation. I apologise unreservedly for them. Whatever the provocation - and there was an attempt at provocation - those comments should never have been made," the letter attributed to Pal read.
"In making them, I have let down my constituents and the people of Bengal, I have let down my party, the Trinamool Congress, and my political colleagues, I have let down my family, including my wife and children and my parents, and my friends."
"I apologise to all of them, and particularly to all women in our society and to those in the media who highlighted the issue," the letter said.
Pal also said there would be no repeat of such incidents.
"I have no excuses to offer. It was a gross error of judgment and deeply insensitive. It should not have happened. And I assure you it will not happen again. Once more, a humble apology," he said in the letter.
The actor-turned-politician, who represents Krishnanagar in Nadia district, has been caught in a video clip warning Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) men to "beware" of him as he won't "spare you and destroy your entire clan" and "unleash my boys to rape your women".
"If a CPI-M man dares to touch anybody, I will take out my gun and shoot him. I always carry a gun... I will destroy his entire clan, I warn my opponents... I will make their family pay dearly. I will ask my boys to go there. They will rape them and leave," Paul is seen saying in the video that has now gone viral.
Slammed by all sundry, political leaders, eminent personalities as well as the country's women rights panel have sought Paul's expulsion from parliament besides his arrest.