In yet another instance of moral policing in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-ruled Uttar Pradesh, a Hindu woman was allegedly harassed for having an affair with a man from the Muslim community. The incident reportedly occurred in Aligarh's Naurangabad district.
In a video that has gone viral, Aligarh President of the BJP's Mahila Morcha, Sangeeta Varshney, can be seen slapping the girl multiple times and shaming her for being in a relationship with a Muslim man.
On the day of the incident, Deepak Sharma, general secretary of Hindu Yuva Vahini, told The Times of India that a group of Vahini members spotted the couple "doing wrong things in public" and confronted them. Later they took them to a police station.
Even after all the harassment, the woman maintained that she was an adult and that Mohd Faizan, 32, is her boyfriend.
Varshney, on seeing the girl openly accepting her relationship, got infuriated and demanded that her parents be called.
"Call your father, let him come here and slap you, then you will understand," the BJP leader can be heard saying. "They are not to be trusted. Everyone knows the consequences of such relations," Varshney was also heard saying.
The girl's father, however, has refused to file a case against anyone as he didn't wish to get embroiled in a controversy.
The Uttar Pradesh administration, currently under the watch of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, introduced the unpopular anti-Romeo squad, which unleashed a reign of intimidation among men and women in the state. After a spate of complaints against the group's overreach of power and vigilante-like behaviour, it was re-named as Nari Suraksha Bal.
A case against Faizan was still registered under Section 294 (indulging in obscene act at a public place) of the Indian Penal Code by the police.
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