The Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) members on Tuesday joined hands to form a human chain and launch a campaign in Delhi University to raise awareness and sensitise students about “love jihad” and the “menace of live-in relationships”.
The ABVP leaders, however, clarified that “forced conversion of Hindu women by Muslim men”, and not love jihad, will be the focus of their campaign on account of the latter having a “communal tone”.
“We are not against love and it is not our intention to target a particular community, but forced conversion of Hindu women by Muslim men using unethical means is a worrying trend and is a reality today. Raising awareness among girls to not fall for such traps will be part of this year-long campaign,” ABVP national secretary Rohit Chahal said.
The campaign will also look at sensitising students about how live-in relationships are against the Indian culture. The organisation plans to enlist the help of student groups to apprise university students about its perils.
“Live-in relationships go against the grain of Indian culture and the institution of family. It is also true that hardly any such relationship succeeds. We will form student groups in various colleges and undertake case studies to apprise girls of the detrimental effects of being in such a relationship,” ABVP Delhi secretary Saket Bahuguna said.
The ABVP leaders also said the larger aim of the campaign was to restore “respect for women”, ensure their safety and achieve a “liquor and drug-free culture”.
Chahal said the issues of “love jihad” and live-in relationships had featured in their national workshop for girls in Lucknow, held in August this year.
“It is our plan to educate girls to not get trapped by men with fake identities who lure them into marriage. The campaign will address the issue, but we are not calling it love jihad,” P Murli Manohar, national secretary of ABVP, said.
Delhi University Student Union (DUSU), however, is yet to take any concrete steps on it. “We don’t want to use that term, but yes, there is a serious issue at stake here and we will have to resolve it,” DUSU president Mohit Daggar said.