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Will love jihad be checked by banning mobile phones for girls?

By Reetu

Mobile phones banned for girls in Uttar Pradesh.
It seems that now the idea of Love jihad is creating more and more fear amongst the people in Uttar Pradesh as a committee in the state has asked school girls from its community to stop using cell phones.

As per a TOI report, "An influential committee of vaishyas (trader) in Uttar Pradesh has asked school girls from the community to stop using cell phones to save themselves from falling prey to love jihad."

The idea of love jihad has gained so much credence in the state that now even the urban communities in UP are calling for ban on mobile phones to save their girls from falling into the trap.

Who has asked for the ban?

The love jihad has not only struck the political arenas but even the layman is now worried because of the idea which even found some space in the BJP UP unit's agenda.

In Agra, the Akhil Bharitiya Vaishya Ekta Parishad (ABVEP), a committee of vaishyas (traders) has decided to ban the use of mobile phones by school-going girls and teenagers.

This is perhaps the first time when such things are being discussed by an urban body. And not only discussion, even such kind of a ban in an urban area is also a pioneering move.

As per the TOI report, "The caste group hopes to keep girls up to Class XII free of mobile phones, and thus less vulnerable to the lures of men from a particular community."

Citing mobile phones, internet as reason behind young girls falling into the trap of love jihad ABEVP national president Sumant Gupta said, "Such things (mobiles, internet) lead young minds to fall in the "love jihad" trap. We are saddened and alarmed by the rising numbers of such cases in the state, especially when vaishya girls are involved. We have no option but to take precautions."

"We will convince them politely, with love. There will be no pressure or force. Karate training will be given to girls so they can protect themselves from anti-social elements and love jihadis," Gupta further said.

Fear of ‘love jihad' gripping western UP

The incidents of forced conversions are coming into fore with every passing day. Reports of Muslim boys luring Hindu girls to marriage and forcing the girls to accept their religion has further widened the divide between the two communities in the region.

Tara Shahdeo conversion case of Ranchi, gang rape and force conversion of Meerut girl, gang rape of a national level TT player from Kanpur, are a few incidents which have cropped up in such a short span of time. This series of incidents have given the parties a chance to politicise the issue and widen the already existing rift between the two communities.

Such diktats will not help, but create more problems

Will banning phones really help the cause? In the past also whenever such moves have been made by the khap panchayats, they have faced criticism. Because, such diktats and that too in today's-era are not in the interests of the girls in the society as the figures of crime against are only rising north. And if mobile phones are blamed for such crimes, then why can't one see that the same phones also help them to stay connected with everyone.

But the point is, everytime something comes in the society, the restrictions are only imposed on girls. Earlier , self-appointed custodians of the society blamed possession of cell phones with girls as reason behind rapes and now the females are going to be deprived of their mobile phones as mobile phones perpetuate ‘love jihad' - the new found evil in the society.

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