Beatings for those celebrating Valentine's Day in India
Hindu extremists aren’t so eager to embrace Valentine’s Day. They have threatened to attack Indian couples who attempt to celebrate this holiday claiming it encourages sexual misdemeanors.
Siri Ram Sena militants, who claim to be custodians of Indian culture, said the day is un-Indian. This threat comes after these activists stormed into the Amnesia Pub at Mangalore and dragged out and beat up women they blamed of acting obscenely and ‘going astray’.
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"If people celebrate the day despite our warning, then we will definitely attack them," said one of the activists Gangadhar Kulkarni. Group’s founder, Pramod Mutalik also added that they will not allow V day celebrations of any kind.
A lot of Hindu radical groups don’t condone what they call corrosive influence of Western culture on India. Open display of affection even in Bollywood films has been objected. Just recently, a couple was picked up by police for kissing near a railway station. Charges against them were dismissed though.
It seems one other thing that has been under threat in India for quite a while besides Valentine’s Day, is the kiss. About two years ago, Richard Gere had a riot act read to him when he planted kisses on actress Shilpa Shetty. Protestors burnt effigies of Gere and others shouted slogans demanding the death of Shetty. In the 90s there was a public outrage after Nelson Mandela kissed actress Shabana Azmi on his visit to India.
Much as India is a traditionally conservative society which is against ‘westoxication’, what is so wrong with a decent display of affection like kissing or a couple's celebration of the love they feel for each other on Valentines Day? Even for those of us who don't believe in V day, aren't you just glad you have the liberty of celebrating it?
Have a lovely V day!
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