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Taliban style in BJP’s Karnataka: moral cops assault girls in pub

Moral policing reared its head again,this time in BJP-ruled Karnataka where members of a right-wing Hindu group...

Written by Agencies | Mangalore | January 26, 2009 4:33:05 pm

Moral policing reared its head again,this time in BJP-ruled Karnataka where members of a right-wing Hindu group assaulted girls in a Mangalore pub,accusing them of behaving in an “obscene manner”. Eyewitnesses said the girls were chased and thrashed by activists of the Sri Ram Sena as they tried to flee from the pub on the busy Balmatta Road in the heart of Mangalore. There were also allegations that some of the girls were molested.

With the attack causing public outrage and inviting wide condemnation,police swung into action,arresting ten activists of the Sri Ram Sena. They have been remanded to judicial custody until Tuesday on charges of assaulting guests of the pub last night,police said.

“About 15 to 20 activists,reportedly belonging to the Sri Ram Sena,barged into the pub late last night and assaulted boys and girls dancing there,” Inspector General of Police (Western Range) A M Prasad told PTI. He said the attackers accused the pub owner of allowing boys and girls to dance and act in an “obscene manner”.

“These people (attackers) simply came in and started beating the girls.

It was a bad scene. Our waiters tried to stop them but they did not listen and kept assaulting the girls,” pub owner A Krishna said. The incident was immediately condemned by the opposition Congress and the state National Commission for Women which promised to take suo motu action against the culprits while the ruling BJP said it was sure that the state government would take strict action against the guilty.

In New Delhi,Union Minister for Women and Child Development Renuka Chowdhry described the attack as “an attempt to Talibanise India” and said she would seek an explanation from the Karnataka government on the issue. “I am absolutely horrified at the insensitivity on the eve of Republic Day. I will seek an explanation from the Karnataka government as well as the self-styled Sri Ram Sena.”

“This (the incident) is an attempt to Talibanise India. There is no place for these kind of acts in India as it is a democracy,” Chowdhry said,adding that the BJP leaders should condemn the incident. She said it is time for Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa to “wake up” and take action against the culprits. Calling the incident “unfortunate”,Karnataka NCW member Nirmala Venkatesh said the attackers had badly beaten victims,especially girls,and suo-motu action would be taken against them.

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