New Delhi: The Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) has asked its youth wing, Bajrang Dal, and women’s wing, Durga Vahini, to keep an eye on cases of ‘love jihad’ and carry out an awareness drive among Hindu families to educate them about it.
The VHP, an RSS affiliate, has been pressing for a law to prevent cases of ‘love jihad’ and had also demanded in October this year that the Modi government put in place a “stringent” law to curb the practice.
“This is a serious issue and has to be addressed soon. As far as the VHP is concerned, we have asked our workers to keep their eyes and ears open and in case they find any such cases, they should bring it to our notice. At the same time, we have also asked them to help the victims of such cases,” said Vinod Bansal, VHP national spokesperson.
VHP sources said it has asked both Bajrang Dal and Durga Vahini to “educate” and make Hindu families “aware” of what ‘love jihad’ is and distribute literature on it.
“Hindu families have to be first informed about what ‘love jihad’ is. There are certain patterns that are followed to lure young innocent women. In many cases, they even fake their identity and the women are ill-treated by Muslim men after they marry. At the same time, they will also show them documented proof of such cases. We have over the past few months compiled a number of such cases, which will hopefully act as a deterrent,” said a senior VHP leader.
In September, the VHP had released a list of 147 alleged ‘love jihad’ cases in its magazine that took place between 2011 and 2020. Some of the latest cases were from Uttar Pradesh.
‘Secular lobby trying to portray ‘love jihad’ as love marriage’
VHP sources said all its state units have been asked to keep the pressure on the respective governments to ensure they formulate a law against ‘love jihad’.
“The so-called secular lobby has been trying to portray ‘love jihad’ as love marriage or inter-religious marriage. We are not against love marriages or inter-religious marriages, but (only) if there is a religious angle involved and requires conversion that is unethical and illegal,” said Bansal.
He further claimed Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat has assured that as the state has a law against ‘love jihad’, they will be scrapping its previous scheme of encouraging inter-religious marriages under which Rs 50,000 is given to such couples.