A recent incident in Meerut was reported by the mainstream media (MSM) with the obligatory outrage that must be vented against anything Hindu. Preliminary reports by the MSM, more so the English language MSM, stated that activists of the Hindu Yuva Vahihi barged into a home in Meerut for purposes of “moral policing” against a young couple. Given its history of suppressing facts, the MSM story was not taken at face value and sure enough undisclosed information began to later emerge. Further details emerged that the story was not about moral policing but just one more of the many cases of Love Jihad.
Love Jihad is when Muslim men posing as Hindus assume Hindu names and try to ensnare young Hindu girls into a romantic relationship. The aim is to ensnare the woman to such an extent that when later she learns that the man is Muslim, she is in no position to extricate herself from the relationship. Once the relationship moves beyond a certain phase, the woman is forced to convert to Islam and marry the boy. As a woman married under the Muslim personal law, she has few rights as her husband can marry four times and divorce her using triple talaq. Many a times, men who already have a wife or two ensnare the Hindu girl into a romantic relationship. Often, girls “chosen” for such entrapment are underage or barely adults and therefore prone to be more gullible and easy to manipulate. Additionally, in most such cases, there is overt or covert support of the family as this report shows. As the report suggests, this tends to happen in neighbourhoods where the Muslim population has exceeded a certain threshold, and therefore intimidation is a major factor in such cases apart from romantic entrapment.
Despite the best efforts of the MSM to suppress reporting on such cases of Love Jihad, numerous instances keep coming to the fore through non-mainstream media channels. A high profile case involving a national level athlete thus hit the headlines even in mainstream newspapers, which are otherwise averse to reporting such instances. The case involved the attempt to forcibly convert national athlete, Tara Shahadeo. Mainstream media further reported on this case (the Times of India on August 27, 2014), but ironically, just two days prior to this report, another mainstream newspaper, the DNA, had this report, mocking the concept of Love Jihad as something cooked up by the RSS.
There are many more instances of Love Jihad such as this one. Much as the “liberal” narrative tries to paint Love Jihad as a figment of imagination of “RSS types,” ground level reporting suggests otherwise. Abduction of underage girls must be considered to be a part of the same league of crimes. In the case of the abduction of minor girl, Tuktuki Mondial in West Bengal, this is what “liberal” media had to say. Later findings revealed that Tuktuki was indeed abducted and forced to convert, until she was finally rescued after much effort and petitions by some activists.
In fact, it is not just Hindu women who are targets of such manipulations or forced marriages. Christian women in Kerala have been targeted as well. For that matter, this is not an occurrence only in India, but also in some other countries having non-Muslims as minority groups, with the only difference being that in these countries such as Pakistan, rather than manipulating the woman, it is done more brazenly, sometimes literally at gunpoint as detailed here. The case of Rinkle Kumari in Pakistan is also widely known. If a Rotherham can happen in a Muslim concentration area in a developed country such as the UK, how can liberals label Love Jihad as imagination of “Hindutva” groups?
Given this scenario, it is rather hypocritical of “liberals” to label recent actions of the Hindu Yuva Vahini in Meerut to be those of “moral policing”. The argument is that individuals must be allowed to choose their partner. This argument is beyond debate and certainly, men and women above the mandated age do have the right to choose their partner. In fact, in many of the above cases where the young women are above the age of consent, there would be no need for intervention of any kind if the cases did not have the aspects of subterfuge (falsely assuming Hindu names to entrap) and of forced conversion to Islam. Outfits like the Bajrang Dal or the Hindu Yuva Vahini, in effect, have helped to prevent such cases of fraud but rants of “liberal” media against “Hindutva” groups have refused to admit the truth of Love Jihad.
Several years ago (in 2004, to be precise), Dateline NBC reporter Chris Hansen conducted a series of stings on sexual predators. With undercover reporters posing as underage girls (sometimes even as underage boys) in Internet chat rooms, predators were lured to a chosen location (ostensibly a house of a teenager where the parents were out of town) for what the predators thought was an interlude with the underage girl or boy. A series of stings were carried out and reporters, working with the police, managed to entrap numerous sexual predators and paedophiles. During this ongoing operation, several men were arrested and many of those arrested were later also prosecuted. The men apprehended, arrested, and further prosecuted through these stings included even some reputable men holding high office, such as government officials, a rabbi, and clerics. Details on this Dateline series are available here. Similar stings were carried out by other news channels such as the CBS.
These stings were widely appreciated. However, because the undercover reporters had falsely presented themselves as teenage girls in Internet Chat rooms, the legality of such an operation was questioned by a few. However, cops largely defended the operation. There was also a belief that there were too many predators around and the police weren’t equipped to keep up. Here, one of the police officers involved said (in other words) that the police could use all the help they receive.
So, in general, this vigilante operation, even though it involved reporters posing as teenagers, was largely lauded in the United States. Hindu activist groups on the other hand, tend to be demonized even though their activities do not involve role play to lure potential culprits, but only a crackdown on actual occurrences. The crackdown takes place after these activists receive information, through their contacts, about possible nefarious activities that may include luring young women into a sex racket, subterfuge (Muslim man posing as a Hindu to romantically entangle a young woman for the purpose of marriage and forced conversion), or targeting of underage girls which implies statutory rape, even if consensual.
Ideally, the police should be involved at the time of the crackdown, but given that cops have enough on their plate, this may not always be possible. Just as sexual predators that prey on underage children are bad, so are those that use subterfuge to entrap young women and force them into a life of slavery. What the Hindu outfits end up doing is play the role of a Neighbourhood Watchdog to protect young women in the neighbourhood from being exploited.
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