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Mob culture vs pub and mall culture

January 30, 2009

Whether it’s the police (usually backed by the state government) or extreme rights groups (encouraged by the state government), and yes even some women’s and students’ groups – they want to interfere in the private lives of people. They are anti the so-called mall, park and pub “culture”, as if this is some sort of culture and not simply places where people go to relax and enjoy. They form mobs and attack and intimidate citizens enjoying themselves and relaxing on beaches, in parks and in pubs. They disrupt fashion shows and movies, and want dancing to be banned. And guess what, they read obscenity even into the most innocuous kisses, like that of Shabana Azmi’s kissing Nelson Mandela (2004) and Richard Gere kissing Shilpa Shetty (2007).

They feel that enjoyment is a sin. Perhaps we should say that the Indian government is against the “enjoyment culture” of its citizens.

These incidents have been happening for years and one wonders whether they are rapidly increasing in number or are simply being reported more often. What is true however that incidents in major cities are usually reported widely. These are just a few news reports which I came across on the internet:

Pune: 2002 A book lover could not find The Photographic Kama Sutra by Linda Sonntag in bookshops. Then he found out that bookshops were afraid to sell erotica, as they were afraid of the moral police and political pressure as well as litigation.

Aligarh 2004: Girls and boys in cyber cafes were driven out by the police. Even restaurants where female students were lunching with male friends were raided by the police. They were slapped and manhandled.

Rajasthan: 2004 The Bajrang Dal went after an organisation dedicated to the conservation and promotion of folk art and culture in Rajasthan for using posters that allegedly denigrated Hindu deities.

Meerut: 2005 A police operation called Majnu was conducted in which couples sitting in parks were beaten up. The errant policemen were investigated, but only for the “excessive” force they used, no one questioned their right to stop couples sitting in parks.

Punjab: 2006 In a small town here, police beat up a group of students celebrating their XIIth class results at a hotel.

Delhi and J&K: 2006 Hardline Hindu groups and Muslim groups burned Valentine’s Day greeting cards, calling it a “western import that spread immorality”.

Assam: 2006 The moral police checked for “anything indecent” going on in the name of festivities. A vigilante group named ‘Asom Sena‘ (Assam army) formed by the influential All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) threatened “action” against hoteliers and revellers if they indulged in anything “obscene” in the name of musical shows or entertainment during the New Year.

Madhya Pradesh: 2006 Fashion shows were banned in government-run colleges, and the women’s commission felt that there should be a dress code for girls in educational institutions “to control incidents of crime against women.”

Chennai: 2007 The police picked up couples from Marina beach for “indecent behavior in public” and also complained to the parents of all the 22 couples.

Chennai: 2007 There were raids on bars and all those present, whether drinking or not, were arrested by the police. At the police station young boys or girls were given lectures on not to drink and smoke!

Jamshedpur: 2007 Couples were chased out of Jubilee Park by policemen. Then the policemen took bribes to let off these people from jail.

Gujarat: 2007 A post-graduate student of Fine Arts at M S University in Vadodara was arrested for exhibiting his work because as right wing activists were upset over the “erotic” element in his work.

Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh: 2007 The moral police, both Hindu and Muslim groups, protested against sex education.

Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Punjab: 2007 The textbooks on sex education watered down to please the moral police, basically right wing groups.

Mysore: 2008 The “moral police” went around Mysore city on New Year’s Eve to prevent organisers from holding celebrations “if they find them against the culture and tradition of the land”. The Bharatiya Janata Party organised five groups, each comprising 15 to 20 people each to “visit hotels, resorts, clubs and community halls here where the New Year eve celebrations were organised to prevent the display of vulgarity and obscenity in the name of celebrations:.

Orissa: 2008 The State Women Commission (SWC) of Orissa launched “Operation Park” to ensure “social discipline” – to stop couples in parks. All this to “protect” young girls who are “deceived by boyfriends.” This Commission’s chairman also believes that “incidents of rape, unwed motherhood and trafficking” will be prevented by this.

The twisted thinking of politicians is evident in this recent statement of the chief minister of Rajasthan (Congress):

Because of this liquor culture, over 6,000 cases of rape were reported in the state when the BJP government was in power. There were incidents of rape against foreign tourists in the state also. We do not want this to happen

So, according to him only drunk men attack and rape women. I wonder what explanation he has for the molestation of women on the streets and buses of India. He also believes that “boys and girls walking hand-in-hand in pubs and malls” is immoral. I guess he feels that if a boy forcibly holds the hand of a girl in a public place, it is more understandable, probably because the girl must have “provoked it” and therefore deserves to be manhandled. When did “Indian” culture  become so twisted? Why have we citizens allowed this to happen?

Dance bars were banned in Maharashtra as it was considered a bad thing. But dance bars were a place where the hordes of single men in the city could go and have a good time with girls who were professionals. But I guess government officials feel that it’s better that perverts attack uninterested women…after all it’s the girls’ fault if that happens so the government can wash its hands off the issue!

Muthalik, the accused criminal (he has scores of criminal cases against him) who is the head of the right wing Ram Sene, incited his followers to attack women enjoying themselves at a pub, and also justified the attack, saying that girls and boys should not sit at pubs together. And immediately after the incident, CM of Karnataka said something stupid like Muthalik’s goons should not take the law into their own hands. But since when has going to pubs become against the law? But it might, if the CM has his way. Yesterday he said:

We won’t allow this pub culture in Karnataka to grow

I think we should not allow this moral policing disease to grow. Let’s vote out all politicians who have done moral policing in the past. Vote out the parties who we suspect will ally with the extreme radical parties post-election. And needless to say, vote out criminals as these people are most likely to incite mobs and attack women. Vote in young people as young people are least likely to indulge in moral policing.  Vote in people with clean records as these people are less likely to indulge in moral policing and criminal and violent activities.

Related Reading: All posts on Women

114 Comments leave one →
  1. ruSh.Me permalink
    January 30, 2009 2:48 pm

    Gehlot to “weed” out Public Display of Affection…

    …also wants to take the moral axe to PDA (public display of affection). Talking to newsmen at the PCC office on the sidelines of a meeting of party leaders, the chief minister said, “An onlooker may enjoy watching young boys and girls moving around arm-in-arm but it is not the culture of Rajasthan.”

    Public Display of Rage, however, can carry on as usual.!

    p.s. on a lighter note:
    “A Republic without a pub in it will be a mere relic.”😀

    rushme, that’s a good one!🙂 Unfortunately our Indian culture has been hijacked by those who have zero understanding of it. – Nita.

  2. Archana permalink
    January 30, 2009 3:12 pm

    Good article.

    Girls going to pub is problem…n wat about boys njoying their life?

    n more why this perseption that only boys/men enjoy being with girls? it can be otherway round also….it subtly says that girls/women can be used for fun enjoyment…wat a perseption!

    Archana, the proponents of “Indian” culture think that women are inferior to men. So their view fits in. At least we women should not vote for those parties who are interested in suppressing women. – Nita.

  3. January 30, 2009 3:29 pm

    I have failed to understand what is the culture and tradition which they are trying to uphold here.

    Kings in every kingdom had courtesans for their pleasures, then why is it wrong for a “Chandini Bar” to function?

    The concept of Purdah came to India predominantly with the Mughals (as far as I know) so if they are talking about Hinduism, then this I do not think would be a good enough reason to keep women hidden from view, and in a non-interacting society. Even the Mughals are considered more relaxed in their purdah, as here the women do not necessarily wear a veil.

    Something interesting, and which I did not gather earlier is that numerous women organizations are pro these initiatives and they believe this is going to safeguard women from rape, molestations and any form of dishonour.

    Why is it that they tend to only find solutions and cures for the symptoms while completely discarding the cause?

    Aathira, perhaps they are afraid that the real cause, which is the low status of women (in all religions) cannot be tackled easily. This whole moral brigade believes that women are inferior and need to controlled. Men who throw acid on women need not be controlled, but the women should be! Also it is quite likely that some of these moral police believe that partying etc is sinful because their idea of enjoyment maybe different. For all you know they might be introverts, incapable of making it with a girl, incapable of conducting a lively conversation, maybe they hate drinking etc…So they cannot stand others doing it. I would like to know what their idea of enjoyment is…I wonder if it is to lecture people on how to conduct their lives? I pity them. – Nita.

  4. January 30, 2009 3:54 pm

    I think every hindu and muslim right wing should stop moral policing and should allow Indian culture, tradition, rituals, fundamentals to get spoiled and ruined .. Only after that, people like us will understand the importance of moral policing .. It’s easy to say that we are capable of holding up our culture and traditions but it’s difficult to implement .. Without fear, no one acts good ..

    By the way, I do not defend or justify beating of innocent girls in manglore .. It was awful that it happened .. Ram sena has spoilt the name of hindus and our god Ram .. he should be punished severly and should be behind the bars for his whole life ..

    Soham, Indian culture, tradition, rituals, fundamentals have already got ruined. Why don’t the moral police go to Tirupati and stop the money culture there? Ofcourse they won’t, because they are not interested in tradition and rituals. The right wing parties are not interested in governing, or improving the lives of people either, or in the real issues concerning India! We need a party which pays attention to the real issues, not on how a neighbor’s wife or daughter behaves! – Nita.

    • Abdullah K. permalink
      November 2, 2009 10:33 pm

      If Indian culture can be ruined so easily by people partying and drinking in pubs, then maybe Indian culture isn’t so such a stable culture after all.

      • vasudev permalink
        November 3, 2009 10:51 am

        abdullah..u r right. it is a gas bag which when pricked would explode loudly spreading stink and filth around. therefore it is better to preserve it as it is.

  5. January 30, 2009 4:01 pm

    Hi

    If you have a moment please read this post by a friend of mine on the same issue… Hope this doesn’t constitute SPAM.

    http://sandeshkaranth.blogspot.com/2009/01/pubs-discos-rss-sri-rama-sene-karave.html

  6. Vivek Khadpekar permalink
    January 30, 2009 4:10 pm

    Re. kissing in public: when Mr. I K Gujaral was PM, he would sometimes receive a peck on the cheek from his (undoubtedly comely) cabinet colleague Ms. Renuka Chowhury (pardon me if I’ve spelt the surname wrong), even before TV cameras. I don’t recall there having been any outrage about that.

    Then there was the notorious, in-the-presence-of-the-cameras, mouth-to-mouth kiss between Mr. Gehlot’s predecessor (who belongs to a more professedly sanskriti-rakshak party) and Ms. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw (again, pardon spelling mistake, if any), which would have caused raised evebrows in the most permissive of modern societies, but surprisingly raised only mild comment in Rajasthan or in India.

    It seems there are different rules of public behaviour for the high-and-mighty than there are for ordinary people.

    Vivek, when I was growing up the only people we had to consider were our parents and guardians. Now we have political parties interfering in the private lives of people, instead of governing. I think this is the most important issue when it comes to electing politicians. Politicians need to do their job, and their job is not to interfere in the private lives of people. – Nita.

    • vasudev permalink
      November 4, 2009 9:55 am

      nita…by interfering the politicians in the us alienated the children from their parents bringing in unheard of rules and laws and so they have so many wanton cases roaming around. india steps into the old rejected shoes of the americans..in every way. as abdullah rightly said, ours is a culture not worth talking about and i think i nicely rounded it up (lol)

  7. January 30, 2009 4:45 pm

    Brilliant Nita. And yes we simply MUST vote in young people who will not have such twisted morality.

    Thanks IHM. I too believe the young are better in this regard. – Nita.

  8. emokshaa permalink
    January 30, 2009 5:38 pm

    On the other hand more than 100 young boys n girl were recently caught at a Mumbai bar having drugs and other psychotropic substances. One small thing leads to other bigger things. Teachers cant punish the students, Vulgarity is prevalent on TV and in Movies, Obscence literature is freely available and all these plus more is going on in the name of Freedom of Expression. Hence respect for fellow human being is missing. Everyone is trying to find fault in other person, culture or religion. Where we are heading ??

    • January 30, 2009 5:53 pm

      emokshaa, certain things like drugs are harmful for health and are also illegal. Health awareness needs to be a top priority as well as public information campaigns. Did the right wing parties have dharnas to demand the pictorial warnings on cigarette packs?? Have they done any health awareness camp for the abuse of drugs? No ofcourse not! Because they prefer to haul a neighbour’s teenager out of a party and touch and molest her in the bargain because they are perverts who only want publicity. And if people are doing illegal drugs, ofcourse the police need to catch them…but that is not what the issue is, is it. The reason for children getting into drug addiction is neglectful parenting, and frankly I can assure you that you will easily find 10 young rickshawallas who are drug addicts! But is the moral police interested in them? Ofcourse not, because there aren’t any women rickshawallas whom they can touch and push around! Also they get less publicty if the raid a small adda of these shady joints, I have a few not far from my house where caberets go on and drugs flow freely. There is a police chowky right outside. You may be interested to know that they are very suspicious of those who they let in. I told someone I knew (male) to try and get in but the fellow looked at him suspiciously and refused to let him in. No women (like us) are allowed in. Only certain types, and ofcourse, policemen!

  9. January 30, 2009 6:14 pm

    Right on, Nita! I watched on net, some guru was defending the recent event as public vigilance against illegal and immoral activities going on in society!!! I have no words to describe how flawed and ridiculous that idea is.
    If the “public” would wake up and charge ahead with this enthusiasm against all events of corruption going on around them for a single hour, instead of perceived threats to INDIAN TRADITION, public vigilance would be more effective in making the world a better place.

    Gurus are often caught in sex scandals and such men see women only in black and white. The “dirty” women and the “good” women who they can beat and control. – Nita

  10. January 30, 2009 6:28 pm

    Nita
    Wow! You have managed to impress me again not only by the thoroughness of your research- but the number of important and sensitive topics you have bought out so eloquently.

    I have many thoughts, but will try to bring up a few.

    1. My thought about the moral police – why target everyday people- isn’t Bollywood and the entire movie industry full of these scenes- or is it ‘ok’ because they are hidden in songs? Or, as you said with Tirpathi, is it not done because 1. it’s way too big to deal with (ie. everyday people on the street are small in number and easy to bully) and 2. there is too much money to get their hands into in the movie industry (as in Tirupathi)?
    2. American culture had similar issues less than 50-60 years ago. Even sooner. The small town I grew up in had segregated schools (boys and girls) until the 60s. Even at this time (50s-60s) interracial couples were not only frowned upon but sometimes arrested by cops, even in more progressive states like New York- and if they somehow managed to get married and have a baby, inlaws or the law would remove the baby forcibly and put it up for adoption. Now a days these things are more tolerated – and thank god as I too am in an interracial marriage.
    3. You can say this is an attempt to corrupt Indian culture and I am not arguing against this point, but who’s to say Indians or people in general in all parts of the global don’t want to enjoy life. Maybe even if we look at history people had more freedom to enjoy life- maybe that enjoyment had a different meaning (ie. not going to bars, but something else, for example). I am not promoting the immorality of society, I am promoting that people are put on this earth to enjoy and if they are not hurting anyone, then why should they be disturbed? What is society afraid of? Maybe this all will come to a head and it is really a catalyst for a major cultural shift… no one can predict… only time will tell.
    4. I take a quote from above, “…only drunk men attack and rape women”. This makes me think of something else- what about men who don’t drink but still rape women- and what about the rape of a wife by her own husband? Does marriage give a man a right to force himself on his wife? Does marriage give man a right to molest and deform his wife sexually, emotionally, and mentally? This can be done with or without drugs and alcohol, especially when women feel that they must always say yes when they really mean no. And, when sex education is not prevalent. What do you think?

    Thanks for your thoughts Jennifer. I think our society too is going through violent change. This is making a lot of people insecure and they are trying to control it. They will fail because the common people will rise up against it. And ofcourse I agree with your point no. 4. Rape and molestation is nothing to do with the drink, it’s to do with the mentality of the man. And forcing himself on his wife I think that’s sick. They might as well divorce. Marriage is about love and respect and partnership – Nita.

  11. January 30, 2009 6:39 pm

    These people are really sick ..
    I mean its upto every individual to decide what to do and not to do ..
    Where is the freedom …
    Where is the democracy ??
    moral policing disease
    apt word !!!
    and they are sick ..

    sick and frustrated! – Nita.

  12. wishtobeanon permalink
    January 30, 2009 6:44 pm

    Hi Nita, thanks once again for posting another heart-felt article! I read in The Hindu that these people should be called the ‘immoral police’ because what they are doing is definitely immoral – ruining other peoples’ lives.

  13. January 30, 2009 7:29 pm

    Brilliant article!And hats off for having the patience to provide all the links….they provide a clear picture of how everyone’s the same…’self righteous moral preachers.’..

    Vote in young people as young people are least likely to indulge in moral policing.

    Yes,this should be our mantra..

    Thanks Indyeah. – Nita.

  14. January 30, 2009 7:41 pm

    Two years ago, I recall reading in the newspaper that they made couples tie rakhi to each other on Valentine’s day in my city (Ranchi)!>

    I read about that. If it were not so sad it would be funny! – Nita.

  15. rags permalink
    January 30, 2009 8:00 pm

    Only jackasses with a serious inferiority complex would feel that public display of affection somehow is damaging to Indian tradition. I’m telling you, these people lead miserable lives, they got no girl, no money and nothing worthwhile to do. So they got to make other people’s life miserable too. How dare other people have fun, hold hands or kiss in front of them. That would destroy Indian culture and make these losers miserable.
    There is also an economic aspect to it. Many of these poor unemployed guys are plain jealous that they would never be able to afford a drink in a pub.. As long as we have a lot of jobless poor frustrated youths this problem will never be solved.

    There is certainly an economic angle to it and also I think a fear that their own women will demand freedom and equality. Many women gladly take on a submissive role at home but if they see other women asserting themselves they get the courage to do the same. This means that the power slips out from the hands of their men. – Nita.

  16. January 30, 2009 8:05 pm

    I also would like to point out that colleges in the state(especially one group of colleges of an ex-minister) have so many bans,boys are not supposed to talk to girls etc…in fact I had a guy from that college come to me and ask me how would I talk when girls were present in a discussion!

    What I find amazing is that having visited places like Ajantha and Ellora and other temples with carvings,I can’t believe these people are convinced that these are against our culture…

    The fact is that dances (including Barathantyam) have been courtesan dances and were patronized by the kings …

    But onething I noticed is that the police in Chennai just arrested and there was no man handling but advices..that is guess is because the people who do hang out in bars etc here are the rich kids and now slowly middle class kids,other wise most of the families here are conservative and more traditional..but then again there are (almost) two parts,one which is filled with a lot of people from the North(and rich) and one mostly with people from the South.
    But I can happily say,that there won’t be much problems here(except maybe the law college?) because all our politicians are actors..

    And on the whole issue,I don’t see why I can’t go out with a girl…And what I do is my problem…Some have tried to preach to me,but then I know for a brand of rudeness,which just makes people shut up😛

    Not allowing boys and girls to talk!That is not a conservative society, it is a repressed society. Men in such societies do everything underhand. When I was in college we talked openly with boys, no moral police existed! I guess we were lucky! – Nita.

  17. January 30, 2009 8:49 pm

    I think forcefully imposing their view on others is wrong, especially when they are not dealing with kids. If they think they are right, then they could live their own lives according to their moralities. The very fact that the other people, whom they are trying to force to act in a certain way they think is right, don’t act in such a fashion, shows clearly that they don’t believe in things like say, drinking is bad for health! And trying to force them to believe in such concepts would make them rebel more and more – I suggest that they stop all this if they want to avoid casual drinkers become addicted drunkards. They have only one advantage – getting free and wide publicity. I hope this was not the thing they wanted, because they have got it!

    DI, some people do rebel but others become repressed. Either way it’s sad. – Nita.

    Destination Infinity

  18. January 30, 2009 9:59 pm

    A passionate post as always, Nita. I wonder what drives these guys towards such measures – the sad story of their own frustrated lives? And these are people who will revel in mirth themselves, women, daru, what have you. If only the women they indulge in showed these “sanskars” and not entertain them, that would be so ironic!

    -g

    Gauri, these men like to keep their own women under lock and key and have fun with those who think are “bad” women. According to them all women who go out and are free are “bad.” They forget that they too fall in that category!🙂 – Nita.

  19. Naveen permalink
    January 30, 2009 10:17 pm

    I too believe that personal freedom and liberty are the most precious things in the world. And no body has a right to tell what the other person should do.

    I’d like to add a bit to what DI said, casual drinkers becoming Alcoholics- its not a result of personal rebellion but is a genetically predisposed condition. People with HDR gene irregularities tend to become Alcoholics. I only hope to see more people taking the test even before trying alcohol and I am not sure if the test is available in India yet. Many families will be saved as it makes its way.

    Thanks Naveen. As you said everyone does not become an alcoholic. There are many factors and genetic factors are also to be considered. I have seen the maximum number of alcoholics amongst the poor though. At least in India. – Nita.

  20. Solilo permalink
    January 30, 2009 10:39 pm

    Well researched and presented, Nita.

    Before the Shilpa-Gere incident, there was Padmini-Prince Charles one too. But in all this there was just hue and cry but nothing came out of it.

    Now it is not the same. Now these moral polices go around thrashing and throwing acid on women. A political gimmick is what it is. Ram Sena is overnight star. Now I am waiting with bated breath for 14 Feb to see another set of violence. The sad part is that we know it’s going to happen and yet in this democracy and a country of billions we can’t stop it.

    Solilo, thanks. As you said now everyone in the country knows about Ram Sene. What they didn’t bargain for is that it will also be known that their leader is a criminal. So in a way I think it has boomeranged on them. – Nita.

  21. vasudev permalink
    January 30, 2009 10:55 pm

    at any time youngsters need something to get their excess energies out of their systems. during my times it was the cabaret. now it is the pub culture. it was a bad idea to ban the cabaret!

    the cabaret is not banned. bar girls and cabarets are only banned officially. Now these things go on illegally. More money for the cops! – Nita.

  22. Captain Sharks permalink
    January 30, 2009 10:57 pm

    Today it is pubs, tomm. it may be jeans, then it may be even education !!(afterall who can guess the mentality of morons)
    it is very difficult to stop these kind of things without the help of govt and police. afterall wat a common person can do ?? stage protest rally n all ?? the main point is wat s d point in staging protest when the shameless politicians r not even going to notice that n even hell knows that it is not going to yield any result but only false assurances (we really are the biggest democracy :))….it is time we should come up with something different unless it becomes totally gundaraaj like making judiciary and media more powerful n most importantly somehow making the police force totally favouring the public side (these men would be then more than enough to tackle these politicians)

    Yeah, once we start rolling backwards, there is no limit to where it stops! I think what the police need is freedom from the politicians. As of now the politicians control them. – Nita.

  23. January 30, 2009 11:18 pm

    “The Bharatiya Janata Party organised five groups, each comprising 15 to 20 people each to “visit hotels, resorts, clubs and community halls here where the New Year eve celebrations were organised to prevent the display of vulgarity and obscenity in the name of celebrations”

    If only these political parties had organised such groups for flood relief or tsunami relief etc !!

    As for the banning the liquor culture, once the CM realises the loss in revenue he will forget his stupid statement. His statement is off the track!! Instead of targetting the goons , he is talking about removing places for relaxation and socialization.
    As if that would prevent people from doing mistakes in their personal life. Who has given the right to Ram Sena to be guardians of adults??

    As religion itself considers women inferior, any party based on a religious identity will always be anti-women even though they may pretend they are not. – Nita.

  24. rags permalink
    January 30, 2009 11:25 pm

    Chennai is not as conservative as it seems to be…You had mentioned police arresting couples in the Marina beach in Chennai… The police did do the right thing there coz many lovers who didn’t have other places to go to used to go there during the night and make out… infact during a clean-up operation of the Marina beach a particular area of the beach was found littered with condoms.🙂 Hmm… Maybe we should just be happy that they atleast used the condoms.🙂

    rags, if a couple is doing it on the beach, yes they need to be arrested. But not everyone who is there and I think that is what happened. Even if couples are sitting together they get arrested! In Bangalore recently a husband and wife casually sitting on a bench talking were arrested! We cannot allow the police to pick up everyone. – Nita.

  25. locutus83 permalink
    January 30, 2009 11:41 pm

    “An idle, frustrated, attention seeking mind with a low sense of self-worth and a Neanderthal attitude is the perfect tool for the Devil”
    Unfortunately, most of our politicians are Devils in disguise, and there are plenty such idle, frustrated minds roaming about in the country..

    Neanderthals huh! I guess you are being too kind to these moral police! Neanderthals as I am sure only beat up their own women! If they tried to do it with another man’s woman, that other Neanderthals would make mincemeat out of them!🙂 – Nita.

  26. January 30, 2009 11:53 pm

    i think nita you are right. to fight back we need to remove the roots of this problem
    and i think its all of us who are electing these politicians, so we have the power to remove them as well
    “moral policing” its just like a piece of ” advice” coming from a donkey’s mouth
    forget about correcting them……..they are incorrigible!

    “advice from a donkey’s mouth!” I love that!🙂 – Nita.

  27. snippetsnscribbles permalink
    January 30, 2009 11:54 pm

    Excellent post, Nita!

    Honestly, as I read your post, my heart was racing. I fear – and I’m not ashamed to admit it – that this is going in the most wrongful direction and I fear bringing up my kids (whenever I have them) in India! Yes, I fear…

    I read a blog yesterday where the person writing it was in full support of the attacks! Left me speechless and with no hope for our country seeing an educated man make horrendous remarks like that! Even with comments from different people that disagreed with his view, he upheld the attack (and also resorted to calling cheap names to the commentator!).

    I wonder what part of “Ram” Sena these guys are exactly following. Some of my thoughts – Lord Rama never attacked in a guerilla fashion. Lord Rama, infact, held even the enemy with the highest regard. He also said that the dead enemies had to be given the same last rites as his men would receive and that it is Kshatriya and Mano (humanity) Dharma. When Lord Hanuman killed Kumbh-Nikumbh (sons of Kumbhakarna), he first handed them over to Kumbhakarna (who was charging towards him for a fight) and told him that they were great warriors and he had not fought anyone that had their valour. Kumbhakarna bowed before Lord Hanuman for it and only then resumed the fight.

    So where exactly are these morons following any of Lord Rama’s steps here in the name of SriRama Sena?? The Ramayana I read did not have any instances of Sri Rama barging into someone’s private life and molesting them.

    You are right, Nita. Only if we VOTE THEM OUT, they will be uprooted.

    Sorry for the long comment but I have been mighty disturbed with these incidents lately and seem to have lost all my faith!

    snippetsnscribbles, these incidents have disturbed me too and I too think that our country is heading in the wrong direction. I think I prefer a weak government to a government on the wrong path. Going in the wrong direction will mean a disaster for this country as no country can be strong without freedom for women. – Nita

  28. wishtobeanon permalink
    January 31, 2009 12:02 am

    I am afraid India will be like Iran one day if these goons are allowed to continue – strict dress code, executions for having pre-marital or extra-marital sex, strict punishment for consuming alcohol etc. Atleast, I don’t think the mullahs in Iran are hypocrites – they probably practice what they preach to others and I think men and women are punished equally. Sorry for going a little too far with this – the Hindutva-vadis are similar to the Islamic fundamentalists who they supposedly despise.

    You are right wishtobeanon, they are Hindu fundamentalists who will take us to the dark ages. And I also feel that the Mullahs in Iran are not hypocrites, it does seem so. However, our Godmen are often caught in rape and sex scandals! – Nita.

  29. wishtobeanon permalink
    January 31, 2009 12:19 am

    Hi Nita, sorry for the emotional rant earlier. You can delete it.

    That was a lovely rant! let it be! – Nita.

  30. January 31, 2009 4:31 am

    Well, well, well. What do we have here – Congress opposes relaxing policies for selling alcohol in Gujarat! http://www.expressindia.com/news/fullstory.php?newsid=80975

    It’s not any different than Yediyurappa’s stance against pub culture in Mangalore. So I guess all the commenters here who were blue in their face shouting against Hindutva should also start shouting against Congress now.😀

    Besides, how dare you go against the ideas of our dear ‘father of the nation’ Gandhiji by calling for pub culture?😉

    I didn’t know it was so easy to yank people’s chains – “hamari liberal values khatre mein hain” and see their knees jerk up in unison.🙂

    Amit, the Rajasthan govt. whom I mentioned is also congress. The congress is not immune from this disease!🙂 After all they too are from the same citizenery! However they are fewer incidents with the congress. Not that I trust the congress because the moral policing in MH also happens during congress rule. – Nita.

  31. January 31, 2009 5:28 am

    As I said somewhere else for the same subject,
    India is a pseudo-secularist state.
    Ideally, government should have no interference in any sort of religious, economical and scientific/technological sector. The role of government is to provide protection for the individual right to freedom of religion culture and property.

    The pubs are the private property of pub owners, and if government disallows pubs and dance bars on the name of Indian culture than it is shameful.

    These politicians must look in history back.

    Dance bars, Pubs, and Prostitution houses were pretty common and cultural in India in the times of Nand dynasty, mauryan dynasty, Chola, chalukya dynasty and Moughal dynasty.
    Gay/lesbian rights were common and reognizable during vedic period and during mauryan dynasty rules too. Khajuraho temples are a mere evidence.

    There is nothing new, nothing foreign in Pub culture, dance bar culture. it is our own Indian culture.
    yet it is not matter of culture.

    Cultural changes are pretty normal thing in human society, noone uses dhoti kurta now.

    Thank Gargi. Unfortunately the so-called guardians of moral culture are ignorant of India’s history and culture and the tolerance of its society. But it’s amazing how these ignorant people think they know all about it. I think we should put them in a time machine and send them back to the ancient times! Let them try their moral policing there and their heads will be chopped off!🙂 – Nita.

  32. Vivek S. Khadpekar permalink
    January 31, 2009 6:53 am

    @ snippetsnscribbles:

    //Lord Rama never attacked in a guerilla fashion.//

    You are right; he did not, even though it would have been a legitimate mode of attack; he did much worse — he slew a brave Vali by shooting him from behind when Vali was engaged in one-to-one combat with another.

  33. January 31, 2009 9:48 am

    Cultural changes are pretty normal thing in human society, noone uses dhoti kurta now.

    I still wear kurta, and dhoti at home – they’re so comfortable. I could be wrong, but I think Vivek K. had mentioned in the past that he also likes to wear such clothes.

    Are you saying no kurtas or dhotis are sold today, since no one wears them? I’m quite sure that kurtas are still sold in India, though it’s possible that the buyers simply use them for some other purpose than wearing them.😉

  34. January 31, 2009 10:13 am

    lol,thats only for the science colleges(see development,they all it ) girls aren’t allowed to wear red as it supposedly sexier…they have weird rules😛 but commerce colleges are on the other end of the spectrum..they go clubbing etc😛

  35. January 31, 2009 10:16 am

    Nita, I dont see these instances of hooliganism as a clash of cultures. They are symptomatic of a society in transition. You seem to imply that the government did not use to interfere in people’s private lives but now does so, but it is not that simple.

    Societal norms and boundaries have never been challenged in India the way they are being today. And this is happening both horizontally (across states) and vertically (across sections of societies). The instances you pointed out happened across India, which means that the whole country is going through a social transformation.

    The other aspect, the challenge to societal norms by oppressed sections of the Indian, other than urban women (namely the lower castes and ppl from the NE) is not highlighted much by the English media. Now why does this happen ? Because the English media itself has a large, modern female presence it, who are extremely sensitive to the issues facing urban females. I am not saying this is a bad thing, but just pointing out facts.

    As old norms are challenged people who feel threatened will do ridiculous things, and the citizens should ensure that these hooligans are put in their place.

    But spare a thought for all the other parts of Indian society that struggle everyday to challenge our social order, but are never heard about.

  36. January 31, 2009 11:32 am

    @ Nita : My god you have patience! I would have been sickened by the time I put that chronology together by the sheer foolishness of such people and the amount of time they have at their hands. Dear Nita, so if we were to only promote Indian culture then should we bring back to life the wonderful ‘nauch’ girls, the burning of widows, cannibalism , thuggery etc. Somehow naked sadhus or jain munis are okay! I do not understand the hypocrisy of this all. You are right let people just be! Oh and if these people do want to do something for their beloved country they can start a neighbourhood cleaning drive instead of a pub cleaning drive. I am sure they will have plenty to do for a couple of decades.

  37. January 31, 2009 12:06 pm

    Its all the way u look at it! Uff…I feel that these parties try seeing things that shud be left unnoticed with a pair of magnifying glasses!!
    Its all unwanted attention towards those people who were enjoying!
    ofcourse, people notice , stare, observe etc a lot….not only girls everyone but its a big problem for girls!! My friend who used 2 wear jeans [all the time!] in UK went back to India, wore twice to office and was so uncomfy that she said she is wearing either lonnng kurtas with a scarf /chudidars!! who should be blamed?
    may b police dont knw where 2 draw a line!!

  38. Vivek Khadpekar permalink
    January 31, 2009 12:28 pm

    @ Amit:

    No, you are not wrong, and I am amazed by your memory for trivia. In fact I wear dhoti and kurta, not at home but as formal wear, quite often in the Ahmedabad summer, and almost always when I go to a wedding or — more often — to a concert (Indian music, of course).

    Kurtas are very much in fashion and are found all over, many of them at astronomical prices. As for dhotis, while the coarse varieties worn in rural areas are widely available, the finer kinds are becoming rare. Even in Kolkata, an elegant taanter dhuti with exquisite borders shot in muga silk is no longer as easy to find as it was ten years ago. In other places (Assam, Orissa, Karnataka, Andhra) you do find decent varieties, but their width and length are rather inadequate for my 5′ 8″ not-so-gigantic frame, unless I am willing to expose one leg from the thigh down and have it riding high on the ankle of the other leg.🙂

  39. January 31, 2009 12:54 pm

    I am outraged.
    I realize that they guys ‘ram sena’ or whatever do all this for publicity. Firstly they have no idea of Indian culture, secondly,they dont want to know.

    I guess our women should be walking around with a pepper spray, but then we cannot do anything against a mob. Our country is not safe for women anymore.

  40. January 31, 2009 2:14 pm

    I didnt see any of the Ram sainiks in a dhoti or kurta pyjama

  41. vasudev permalink
    January 31, 2009 2:42 pm

    cabaret got banned during my college final year days. there might have been illegal cabarets but i never bothered about them ever after. while going to cabarets i did have a feeling of guilt and shame. so i did not frequent such places of sin after i noticed stark naked damcing/charas/ganja smoke filled rooms and open soliciting between men and women. pub culture is also likely to be attended by a depreciation in morality unless one is remorseful and pulls out on time.

    If you say that pubs are like that, then you could also say hotels. Because just there is a difference in the type of hotel, there is a difference in the type of pub. I think people mistake pubs for exactly the kind of sleazy bars you refer to, and believe me, these bars are absolutely thriving and mostly frequented by the moral police. These bars are okay with the moral police. You know why? Because “bad” girls go there. What they cannot stand is a decent pub. – Nita.

  42. January 31, 2009 3:42 pm

    A well-researched post – wow! Listing all those incidents and concluding that we need to vote in the right kind of people to lead us was really impressive. I have contributed my 2 paise worth in my post today. Hope it all works!

  43. January 31, 2009 6:51 pm

    I think we should put them in a time machine and send them back to the ancient times! Let them try their moral policing there and their heads will be chopped off!

    That is no solution.
    See your post and comments put up by your readers are more emotional rather than directive towards a solution.
    Solution is to denounce moral policing, solution is to denounce government interference in individual life, solution is to denounce government.
    There are many blogs and blog writers, often I have seen, their motive remains gathering more and more readers rather than putting up a strong revolutionary rational activism.
    Denouncing moral policing by these leaders includes a whole lot.

    if you allow me, I will let you see some dichotomy.

    Just last week you published your writeup about Smoking, you were showing worries about smokers, subtly you favored governmental bans and high taxation too. Ok there you showed you NEED government to ban and censor tobacco products because Indian Individuals are fool enough to not to judge for themselves whether they should smoke or not.

    Here you are posing yourself quite opposite. You are saying that these moral police of politicians and government (BJP and Congress both) must not interfere with individual life, you are saying individual should be free to enjoy.
    You are not only supporting alcohol, you are supporting pubs and dance bars too. Obviously, it is against Congress, against BJP too.
    You claim that moral policing in arts is also wrong.
    If drinking alcohol or not drinking, should be the decision of Individual, why should smoking be banned?
    Basically, we should understand our own fault, the fault is our illogical thinking that we NEED government to rule over us, to teach us what are morals, how should we live, how we should use our own earned wealth, how should we remain in houses at night after 8 or 9 o clock at night.
    The solution is all bloggers of our friends net start emphasizing that it is not in government’s hand to think what is good for us, it is in our FREE hands and FREE minds to think for our own good and act for our own good.
    Until this feeling of freedom won’t lit up in every heart of Indian, every individual citizen, government will keep policing us in some way or other.

    And about those policy makers, I have a comment.
    “The planner is a potential dictator who wants to deprive all other people of the power to plan and act according to their own plans. He aims at one thing only: the exclusive absolute preeminence of his own plan.” Ludwig Von Mises.

    P.S I wish people understand the importance of freedom, I wish people do not allow any government (be it Indian or foreign) to rule over us Indian Individuals. I wish we understand that anytime any collective effort made for welfare state, it always failed, because it is illogical, ilogical to give power to some aristocratic group to plan for us, make policies.
    I wish every Indian understand the importance of learning, learning different from what governments teach and indoctrinate us. This government is no better than taliban, just the books differs. one follows Quran and Shariat law, other follows unchecked illogical Constitution, both works on totalitarian indoctrination process, no difference.

  44. psripada101 permalink
    January 31, 2009 7:10 pm

    The “Sri Ram Sena”, goons/sainiks are insane.These in(sainiks), should be punished immediately.Unfortunately, they have been let off on bail today.

  45. vasudev permalink
    January 31, 2009 10:02 pm

    nita…there are a few things we forget which probably our nannies might have taught us:

    ‘whether the thorn falls on the plantain or the plantain falls on the thorn the damage is always to the plantain.’ (or something to the effect)

    the physical logic, of course, is no more valid, what with condoms and pills abounding. but the moral and spiritual damage is always there.

    whether pub or hotel or sleazy joints, wherever there is an attractive looking woman having a ball, there would be guys waiting to get into a friendship. and over a few pegs the thinking becomes: ‘hey! what the hell! let’s do it!’

    women can easily prove their supremacy over men. it does not require aping the guy in every which way. women have their own inherent strengths which can be exploited in a different way by themselves. one example is: career.

    Everyone has the right to choose the way he/she wants to live. If two people want to have sex, that’s their business, not the business of the government. – Nita.

  46. Ravi permalink
    January 31, 2009 11:19 pm

    @Bloggers

    I have read most of the comments above some are protesting the attack, few bloggers are disgusted by typical indian male chauvinism but I see the whole issue from a different prospective and thought that hey may be i can share with u guyz..I may be wrong but it’s just an opinion and there is no harm in expressing it.

    The reasons that lead to the above serious of unfortunate events might be….

    1. Women in India started to open up to the society by going to schools/colleges, doing jobs, hanging out at pubs with opposite sex but the majority of Indian men still living in 15th century and think that women are inferior to men, physically weak and easy to take advantage of which is not entirely true at least the inferior part.

    2. MOVIES!!! Indian public especially men are tremendously influenced by our crappy movies but in a wrong way though . Unlike in hollywood, where women dress in movies like they do in day to day life, in indian movies we have actresses dress in skimpy clothes and hump with hero and a dance troop of 100 on roads, in parks and in every possible place in public. I m neither advocating to put restrictions on them nor that im supporting it. After seeing this our immature indian audience, become vulnerable to women dressed in modern outfits like a tight sleeveless top and a low hip jeans.

    3. Money! women and money they compliment each other. Its not like im disclosing the fact or something.. come on! every body knows that women comes with money. Few indian men have money like India has few beautiful women.. what! you heard me!!! In India its not like you run into a bazaar and you come across only beautiful women.. most of them are from ugly to average. Sorry if my choice of words offended any *apologizes* .. But this is what indians think and we need to face it! we have this notion that only fair skinned ppl are beautiful and dark skinned are ugly ..lol we can even see indians acting racist towards blacks in US. But the thing is every guy who looks from ugly to hunk, from short to tall PREFERS only beautiful women. If you look at the guys who stormed the pub and attacked women in mangalore none of them are from wealthy family not even have decent educational background. You can say that from their attire that they are from the section of indians who earn less than $2 a day. It is their poverty who made them to resort to such a heinous activity. They all know that they could never hang out with women like that not even they can hold a conversation. Touching them by some means seemed like the only option left with them and some political organization like RAM .. whatever it is.. took advantage of those unfortunate souls and made them attack in broad day light for the cause of Rama and uplifting drowning Hindu Morales. Gosh! who these guys are kidding?

    I think its the notion not exactly notion but there are instances where a mob attack a girl in public in the name of god and get away with it without getting sentenced. Unless it ends in India nobody is safe. Today its in mangalore who knows in future it might be repeated in Bombay, Madras or Hyderabad. Also kids must be taught at school to MTOFB!!!

  47. Ravi permalink
    January 31, 2009 11:42 pm

    Vasudev

    lol … the proverb relating plantain and thorn reminds me of an old telugu saying from which I suppose u r a telugu may b not🙂 Cabaret is still there and in vogue. All the rich kids in Hyd hang out in their farm houses and guess who they have on list… from film stars to TV anchors. They are get drunk and party till morning but how many times media has blown the whistle and published articles in city edition or police arrested them and release the news to press? We can do anything in India if we have money and political background. Sad that common man is deprived of enjoying things like cabaret. Its unfortunate that we have rules but apply only to selected few. India is democratic but practices monarchy! lol..which is why we have rahul gandi in politics.. lmaooooooo

  48. February 1, 2009 2:05 am

    Hinduism is like every other religion. All of them are deluded in the belief that there is a set list of morality. The person that thinks drugs are bad; Hinduism has been the biggest proponent of drugs in history. Most of the natural drugs were “perfected” by our ancestors. Hindu gods in popular media are always portrayed as having a drink while being entertained by “apsaras” (touche for the Chandni Bar reference). What kind of “morality” are such “gods” going to give the retarded zealots?

    Most of our gods just sat on their asses until “shit happened”. When the “rakshasas” would begin winning, our demi-gods, would shit their pants and run to one of the bigger gods asking them to save their ass (Samudhra Manthan anyone?).

    The mahabharat is filled with ethical and moral gray areas, as well as blatant disrespect for, what is widely accepted to be moral today (morality changes everyday, slavery was acceptable 200 years back, not anymore. The term, morality is a highly gray area in itself). If my myth knowledge is accurate, wasn’t “Lord” krishna present at the kauravas festivities where they “undress” Draupadi? Witnessing such a serious act, what does god do? Pull a prank. Make her saree longer. Does anyone else find that sadistic?

    hmm.. The pandavas were also the “good” guys. Yet they wager “their” wife. (polygamy… the good old days). How about the fact that the blue man turns it into night, (official end of battle for the day) just so that Arjuna could avenge his son’s death, whom he (or one of his brothers) WILLINGLY sent into the chakravyooh.

    I’m sorry if some of these are factually incorrect/inaccurate. It has been a long time since I cared for the hindu “holy books”. The fact is, that the hindu gods cheated every chance they got. Our myths are filled with beguiling gods. So to expect anything better from a “pious” Hindu is retarded. Those that claim that hinduism is a great and good religion, and that these people are just ruining the “faith”, need to take a closer, more skeptical look at their faith. You might just get startled.

    @Nita: Voting won’t matter, since the majority of Indians think like those psychopaths. Also, age is immaterial. Most of the men in the videos I saw were young, probably in their 20s. It is imperative that rational and progressive Indians realize that they are outnumbered, and begin voting with the only thing that matters; MONEY. Use your money to make a statement. Stop giving to temples and mosques so that they can destructively brain wash more of India’s underprivileged youth. And if you think your temple is one of those good ones that only does noble deeds… Heck, you deserve the India you see.
    —————–
    If you haven’t been convinced about the evils of organized religion by now, with the world that we live in, then I pity you, and the people that are forced to co-exist with you.

    @Vikas from Ranchi:
    Tying a rakhi makes a girl your sister? I mean, girls tied rakhis to boys in school, often breaking so many hearts. But I hardly think that deters the guys from harboring fantasies. All it leads to, is confused sexuality.

    Thankfully for me, I never gave a damn, moral policing doesn’t work on thoughts, else I’d be stoned to death😛

    @Nita: Sorry to disappoint you. There is going to be no mass uprising. The “elites” in India, the ones that are outraged by this incident and the many others like it, are in a world of their own, distanced from reality. And what, pray is the mode of India’s uprising? More dharnas? More strikes? More “voting” against these elements? It is like your foot (or both feet…and hands… and heck… head) being infected and you are trying to make sure the gangrene doesn’t spread.

    @Jennifer
    Even within the blogosphere, you are already apologizing for your viewpoint. If it offends the Hindus, so be it. Most irrationally pious people have their heads stuck up their ass so far up, that no matter how respectfully you put it, it is still offensive. And haven’t we taken this “respect” for religion too far? Isn’t that why Hindus, muslims, christians, and whatever other -ism you believe in, choose to take advantage of those who don’t care? Isn’t that the very reason, film-makers in Denmark get stabbed in the middle of a street in broad daylight? Isn’t that why newspapers must retract satirical cartoons out of their publishings? Isn’t that why women in pubs get beaten up?

    • February 1, 2009 9:05 am

      DD, I think I needed that to bring me back to earth. Can’t help but think that you are right. Many Indians do have the narrowminded attitude you mention and by saying that the motive of the attacks was good, they are giving ammunition to the attackers. If anyone says that the people should have been driven out of the pub peacefully, it just shows that they are hypocrites because there can never any such thing. It all depends on the mood of the moment, and the people are at the mercy of the moral police.
      However, despite the fact that what you said is true, that it is a small section of society which is fighting for justice, I will not give up hope. Will try my best to spread my views, because a tiny millionth of a drop in the ocean is better than nothing.

  49. openlight permalink
    February 1, 2009 11:59 am

    Your post is more skewed towards the anti-moral policing sentiment prevalent.
    A balanced approach also, taking into light the other side of picture, has not been taken.

    I agree that women harassment has been on rise and government is not taking stern action in dealing with it.

    Even kiran Bedi said in an interview that if eve-teasing is contained, rapes will also be contained to certain extent. Rapists and eve-teaser have no fear of law and are not boycotted socially. Instead the incidents are just passed around. And i strongly believe i social boycott of such lechers.

    But where this ‘enjoyment’ is taking our ‘modern’ society is also evident of some incidents —

    – DPS scandal (http://www.expressindia.com/news/fullstory.php?newsid=39698) – Two 12th standard ‘modern’ girl and boy engage in ‘enjoyment’ and for all upcoming generation to see and follow ??

    – Rise in teenage pregnancies and sex ( why not to decrease the marriageable age)

    – Even west is facing similar problems of teenage pregnancies, drug addiction, alcohol abuse.

    The issue is about individual upbringing, ethics and maturity to handle these issues.

    Pub culture is an western concept and it will spread obviously, when we have MNCs and foreigners coming they want pubs as it is part off common man’s life in west.

    But India also lack proper moral education in school level, where ever it is given, it is just seen as time pass.

    Further, media also adds glamor to these stuff (Sex,alcohol,smoking) and society is facing consequences — rise in addicts,drunkards,smokers.

    Govt should take strict action against alcohol and cigarette makers and also clean up the glamor added to these things.

    Fun in Indian context was in community or family context but has been now relegated to an individual pleasure – again an western off shot for materialism.

  50. Naveen permalink
    February 1, 2009 12:08 pm

    @DD
    ‘Rational’ and ‘progressive’ does not mean to purposefully stamp on someone’s feet and Freedom remains anybody’s personal affair till you don’t get into someone else’s affair. I am not a believer in scriptures or organized religion but am a bit dissappointed with your rant. I always believed that ‘forceful atheism’ is fundamentalism, but of a different kind. You proved my point.

  51. February 1, 2009 1:53 pm

    Nita,
    India has such burning issues which needs to be addressed immediately but all our political parties have only time to support goons who beat up girls to save our culture.
    And, believe me, if you conduct a nation wide poll(including the interiors) and ask people if they support what was done in Mangalore, you would be shocked by the results.
    When I was doing my Masters from Kurukshetra, there was a girl in my class who fell in love with a boy of another community. I still remember her face when she came to give her final exams, all punched and blue and wounded. It was done by her father for defaming their family.

  52. Mahesh permalink
    February 1, 2009 5:42 pm

    Freedom comes with responsibility. Girl may go to the pub with the good intention of spending some time there with their male companion. Everything is fine until everyone is sober. What happens when either boy or the girl lose their balance.

    One may argue that you have freedom to do anything you want to. If only a boy looses his balance or if both the boy and the girl lose their balance then the person who is going to reap the fruit is the girl only. Can you say that it is having your freedom with responsibility…?

    There are cases when the girls beget children before marriage and conceal it and even go to the extent of disposing off the child in some manner or the other and marrying some other unsuspecting guy.

    Do you say this is right. This situation could have been avoided had the girl and the boy had been little careful. What right you have to deprive the child born (may be out of wedlock) its parents.

    Yet these things do happen in the soceity.

    There are instances where the girls are taken photos in the most compromising positions and then they are black mailed.

    The black mailer could be her ex-boy friend also.

    Can we allow this in the name of freedom.

    • Abdullah K. permalink
      November 3, 2009 2:04 am

      One off instances. Most of the girls and boys going to pubs don’t end up having babies and aborting it. If that be the case, then we might as well ban marriage because the risk of the girl getting burnt for dowries exists.

  53. vasudev permalink
    February 1, 2009 8:49 pm

    i took a poll. i asked my daughter’s friends and classmates (all girls studying at mangalore). results are in favour of action against the pub goers (sorry nita). i won’t say they supported the means but they did support the end.

    reasons:
    1. people are free to do whatever they want to do but in pvt.
    2. college ragging lends many girls (freshers) to be dragged into such pubs (unwillingly) by seniors (women colluting with men…shocking!!!)
    3. many girls go to pub for first experience then do not continue.
    4. many girls are weak either to protest or to discontinue (such are girls mainly with strict upbringing and basically with rural background)…girls from cities and exposed to certain situations are smarter
    5. the girls unanimously felt that they could not afford the expense of either having the pleasure or having the child (girls are predominantly against single mother concept or having baby outside of wedlock)
    6. girls felt they would not like to go to pubs (some said let those spoilt brats go and spoil themselves further. it should not give way to others getting pulled into…obviously they are afraid of getting pulled into by spoilt seniors).
    my conclusion: by and large indian women detest westernisation/forcible application of characterlessness/would like to pursue a career and settle down and bring-up a nice family/do not like multiple partners or wantoness/like to lead by good examples and follow their parents.

    Vasudev, interesting to know that girls seem to think that most girls are forced or enticed to go to pubs. As if they are either weak or dumb. Sad!! Also I am amazed to hear that girls link drinking/pubbing with sex. Premarital sex happens as frequently amongst those who are not into regular drinking and pubbing. A girl need not go to a pub to be “enticed” by a boy to run away with him!🙂 These things happen in villages all the time where there are no pubs! This is a major fallacy, that pubs are dens of sex!🙂 Some Indians are simply not used to seeing people drink in public. If one has to drink with the opposite sex, it’s always safer to do it in public, instead of some shady hotel room or someone’s house where anything can happen to the “weak” and “helpless” girl! – Nita.

    • February 1, 2009 9:59 pm

      Vasudev, I was thinking about your comment and realised that it was you, a father of a girl, who had taken this survey! All the girls knew you! And you can easily contact any of their parents, and maybe even know them. Also they will want to make a “good” impression on you. I think you need to take this into consideration.

  54. rags permalink
    February 1, 2009 9:34 pm

    Thanks for objectifying women Ravi!

    As for the other comments : If a women gets pregnant its her problem, not the Ram sena’s or the vaanar sena’s.
    If you are scared of people taking advantage of you in pubs please don’t go there!! Problem solved!! If ragging is going to happen complain to the college authorities!Why prevent other people from going there??

  55. vasudev permalink
    February 1, 2009 10:05 pm

    rags…complaining to college authorities does not go well with the seniors. it makes more trouble than solve any. women are prone to attacks and seniors have a habit of remembering. besides, there are many who are rich and powerful and with a least memory for anything academic but with a lasting memory for anything sexual/sensual or vengenful. how do you tackle them? please be practical.

    besides, the group did not talk about preventing anyone from going there. it was a scattered group giving individual opinions. they did say…let the spoilt brats spoil themselves further…

  56. vasudev permalink
    February 1, 2009 10:15 pm

    nita…on your critical comment on my post…

    i do admit that it was a small group (precisely 6 girls) whom i could ask the question over phone, long distance to bangalore, delhi, chandigarh and mangalore (being vacation in karnataka my daughter is with me at mumbai). but then even exit polls are done with representative groups only and do not encompass the whole mass.

    the girls are all engineering students and least exposed to higher level HR interactions like what mass-media students are exposed to. therefore their opinions are likely to appear to be somewhat skewed to those girls who have gone through exotic/exciting professional colleges. but they have their own fears/opinions and experiences to share.

  57. vasudev permalink
    February 1, 2009 10:24 pm

    nita…on your main line comment:

    hmmm! quite a worrisome possibility! the need to play the good girl-b4-dad-uncle stuff.

    kya karega? jiska kismat bhagwan ne banaya uska kismat bhagwan hi sambhale!

  58. February 1, 2009 10:41 pm

    @Naveen:
    Forceful atheism? How old are you? You cannot FORCE someone to think. Atheism isn’t about NOT BELIEVING IN GOD. That is where theists (probably like yourself) make the fundamental mistake. Atheism is about being able to think about it and reach a rational conclusion. That conclusion happens to be that there is NO god (at least not a supernatural one). I can go about proving that there is no god, and in more than one ways. I can use scientific methods (which we use to prove many other things in the physical world, which we choose to allow into our lives, so if you decide you don’t need science, it might be time you logged off your computer and went back to the dark ages; which seems to be happening in India anyway, so have fun).

    Anyway, all I did was express my point of view, so I don’t see how that is forceful. There was no gun at pointed at your temples (head), (but looks like you don’t need guns when you have the numbers and the cops!)

    The fact remains (I am not an Atheist, I am an Anti-Theist), that atheists are pretty harmless, which I feel is a bad thing. There comes a time when the rational people must say ENOUGH is enough. If that means I have to step on the toes of a few deluded theists to make them wake up; so be it. This tacit respect of religion is what got us here in the first place. Let us just agree to disagree, since you are NEVER going to convince me of the merits of religion.

    What is wrong with pleasing yourself? We are on this life to please our senses. That is the only thing real in this fleeting existence. So I am sure you are against masturbation and sexual intercourse. That does please just you (perhaps, arguably your partner as well) but the community you talk of is left out. Unless you are into orgies.

    Someone (Marx, I think) once said, “Religion is the opiate of the masses”. And it is the weak that need mind-altering drugs. People NEED to delude themselves so that their weak lives make sense. I have no problem with that as long as their delusions don’t spill over and affect my life. The day that happens (and it has already happened); I have the right to be “FORCEFUL” and protect my basic rights of choice, privacy and decency. If you disagree, then there is no point in my arguing with you, because as far as I am concerned, you are one of them.

    Defense is not fundamentalism.

    @Open light: So the answer to all that is to curb the basic freedoms of choice, speech and thought/moral policing? You prove that you are no better. If you want DPS scandals not to be happening, you have to treat sex the way it needs to be, like a fact of life, not some dark dirty secret. If you have ever seen a little kid, you will know, that the second you make it secretive or unattainable, they want it more. That is basic human nature, child or adult. The question is, when are you going to get out of your dark age, and let people do what they want to. If they want to fornicate till their drug addled brains are turned into mush and they contract a STD, so be it. Let evolution take its course. The smart ones, that know that neither extreme is good, will survive. You have no right to choose for me, just as I have no right to choose for you. So if you choose to waste your life in prayer, so be it. Just don’t strap on a bomb to your chest and do the work of your god. In that event, I will fight back, and it will be justified.

    The west has its short-comings. But it isn’t the pursuit of individualism. That is why they win more medals at sports events, have more nobel prize winners (read people that use their brains innovatively, rather than create the same C++ code day in and day out), have more technical and artistic innovation than any other “civilization”. It is this pursuit of individualistic pleasure that has made the west as strong as they are. Because evolution is individualistic. What may be good for one organism, isn’t necessarily good for another.

    Lastly, you are part of the problem. You might be against the violence, but you are for the moral policing of our thoughts and our actions.

    @Vasudev:

    I am sorry, but your daughter and her friends are severely misguided. Their reasoning, at best, is infantile, at worst, I’d rather not say because it will make it personal.

    1. A pub is private. If you don’t like what happens in a pub, DON’T GO. Pub owners and management have the rights to refuse service (as long as it is not a violation of fundamental rights, so yes, it is a private place and not public).

    2. So the solution to curb ragging is to curb freedoms of EVERY woman? Why not try to stop ragging? This is why I said their reasoning is infantile. Over-simplification of a complex issue.

    3. If they go JUST once and stop, then how does that harm “moral values”? That doesn’t even make sense. This is one of the “it would be personal” remarks.

    4. Protest or discontinue what? If women are being FORCED to go to a bar, they can go to the cops. The issue is not about whether women are forced, but whether the they SHOULD BE ALLOWED to enter into a bar. Again, infantile reasoning.

    5. Wed-lock? Huh? So every person that goes into a bar has sex and has kids? I’ve been to a bar over a dozen times. Damn, those 12 kids are going to be really messed up without a father.

    Sarcasm aside, has anyone in India heard of this really innovative new invention called a condom, or THE pill?

    Finally, going to a bar/pub is characterless? Having sex is characterless? Then I have news for you. India is the second most immoral country by those standards, if the last census didn’t undercount us again. If any other group of people has more sex than Indians, I have not come across them. So stop enforcing double standards.

    @Nita: I think the last few comments have proved beyond the shadow of a doubt that you have more “enemies” than allies. The point I was making with my “rant” is that you are up against a wall. Just voting, or just writing about it is not going to help. It has to be a conscious effort, in every facet of your everyday life. You vote when you watch TV, you vote when you buy vegetables, you vote when you buy a bottle of pepsi. That is a fact you need to realize. If you watch one of those “saah-bahu-vixen” “serials”, you are voting for that culture. If you go to tirupati, you vote for the double standards of ethics and morality. If you buy vegetables from a man who beats his wife up, you are voting for the very patriarchal society you so despise. That is the point I was making. It never occurred to me to tell you your efforts were useless.

    I hope you better understand where I am coming from now.

  59. February 1, 2009 10:42 pm

    P.S. There were a lot of typos in my responses. I apologize.

  60. February 1, 2009 10:43 pm

    P.P.S. Sorry for another super-long rant. I realize my responses are probably falling on deaf ears, Nita, but like you, I am trying to be optimistic, because like it or not, it is my “native”.

  61. vasudev permalink
    February 1, 2009 10:49 pm

    TDD…there would always be two opinions on one single topic and that’s why god made human beings so different…it is only he who gets an ultimate kick out of the whole thing. now you give a different twist to it and nita makes my hairs turn prematuredly grey. so my stand is:

    ‘jiska jitna uska utna!’

  62. rags permalink
    February 1, 2009 11:51 pm

    @ Depressed Doormat- Yours is hardly a rant. It makes a lot of sense (atleast to me).

  63. February 2, 2009 12:06 am

    @Rags:
    I called it a rant because of its length. Not content. I think I’ve been at least slightly objective about it all, and have tried to make sure I don’t have any double standards.

    @Vasudev
    Yes. There is more than 2 opinions on any given topic. Someone once said, if you leave 10 rational, thinking people in a room to debate long enough, they will have enough logical stances as the hairs on their bodies. While that is definitely a hyperbole, it suffices to illustrate that there need not be a single idea on a given topic.

    What is in debate here, is the right to have multiple opinions. Moral policing hopes to curb the other side of the coin. So I don’t see the point you are trying to make. If they want to stay out of bars to live “pious” lives, so be it. DO NOT make that choice for me. If you still don’t understand what I am trying to say, I do not wish to continue this discussion, since you are obviously picking and choosing what you read and taking things out of context to prove your point, rather than gauging the summary of my statements.

    As for your hindi “kahavat”, I do not know what it means and I don’t care. This is an issue on which I will not bend. It is an issue on which any rationally thinking and sane Indian, should not compromise. And yes, I think those college girls you quote, are neither rational nor sane. I would love to see what they have to say when they are told by these psychopaths what they should wear, eat, watch, read, think; and don’t you worry, it will come to that if you let it. If they are still for policing of morality, then they are sheep. They have something fundamentally wrong with their ability to piece parts of a puzzle and make complex decisions. If this offends you, it should, not because a third person is “insulting” them, but because the truth hurts.

  64. February 2, 2009 1:53 am

    “If you buy vegetables from a man who beats his wife up, you are voting for the very patriarchal society you so despise. “

    TDD, perhaps the irony of your comment above is lost on you, in the context of what’s being discussed.

    So do you have an agency or an organization that hands out affidavits that certify to citizens which vendors and shop-keepers they buy from are above reproach, according to standards set by you? Or perhaps consumers should carry with them some sort of “Ten Commandments” (TDD version?) which they refer to and ask the seller certain questions before buying anything? That would indeed be an innovative solution to the problem of moral policing.🙂

  65. February 2, 2009 1:58 am

    @Amit:

    This is all subject to prior knowledge. Don’t patronize me and quote it out of context just to make a point. If you don’t think what I am saying makes sense, don’t do it. You are free to do what you please and reap the India you sow. Those that were not reading each word literally, like it were gospel, know what I mean. I am sick of explaining simple sentences that should make ample sense if read sensibly.

    NB: Putting a big smiley at the end does not diminish the intended offense.

  66. February 2, 2009 2:03 am

    @Amit:

    What irony? Am I asking Nita to go punch that guy? To burn his genitals, or worse, castrate him? What she is doing is legally and fundamentally within her rights. She is choosing to take her business else where. That is not moral policing. That is called voting by the green. It is a concept that has helped empower the people in the west. If you want to look at it as moral policing, so be it. But I choose to look at it as what it is, the real power of the middle class.

  67. February 2, 2009 3:03 am

    “This is all subject to prior knowledge. Don’t patronize me and quote it out of context just to make a point. “

    TDD, it’s not patronizing – if you don’t like my comment on what you wrote, move on.

    “If you don’t think what I am saying makes sense, don’t do it. You are free to do what you please and reap the India you sow. “

    Again, if you don’t like what I wrote, move on. I found it ironic, I mentioned it – I don’t have to go by whether you find it ironic or not. If what you suggested seems stupid to me, I am free to express that sentiment. How does expressing my views interfere with your freedom to do it?

    “Those that were not reading each word literally, like it were gospel, know what I mean. I am sick of explaining simple sentences that should make ample sense if read sensibly.”

    Oh so your comments were not literal? Perhaps the fault lies in your skills to express yourself with enough clarity, or are you trying to be patronizing here- the same attitude which you accused me of? As they say, it takes one to know one.😉

    (And I don’t care about your opinion of use of smileys – you can take your opinion and shove it where the sun don’t shine.)😀

  68. February 2, 2009 3:07 am

    I have just two words for you, and it is only out of respect for Nita that I will refrain from telling you just what they are.

  69. February 2, 2009 3:11 am

    TDD, as if I care.

    • February 2, 2009 7:41 am

      I get up this morning and see this exchange between two of my oldest commentators! hey guys, chill. It’s a such a minor thing. I feel I know you both after two years on this blog, and I am sure if you guys met in real life, you will get on like a house on fire!🙂

  70. February 2, 2009 7:39 am

    Hi Nita,

    I am very much agreeing to your sentiments on this issue. The Government and people should remember that everyone has the right to live as they wish as long as it doesn’t hurt others. And the ones who make these kinds of problems are the ones who like to exploit such activities for publicity. Its a shame for our nation.

  71. February 2, 2009 7:57 am

    Perhaps so Nita. But I have lost some of my sense of humor following these events. You will pardon me if I am not as jovially accepting today of a little tongue in cheek. And you will also pardon me if it seems like I am over-reacting in a delayed manner. I just heard about this news a couple of days back, since my only source of news, the internet, has been down and out, belly up, for 2 weeks.

    I look forward to some more upbeat news soon; but I won’t count on it.

  72. locutus83 permalink
    February 2, 2009 12:27 pm

    Nita: sorry to go slightly off topic:

    @The Depressed Doormat, don’t get so depressed!
    I am really impressed by your thoughts and arguments, and it seems we think quite alike, regards to religion, individualism, logic, freedom and society.

    In my opinion, organized religion and COERCIVE ideology are the two biggest evils on Earth, and have led (and still continue to lead ) to massive death and destruction.

    Lassize-faire individualism, personal freedom with co-operation and teamwork based on free and voluntary exchange are the keys to true human progress, in my view.

    And nobody has a right to IMPOSE his or her views on others!

    I think you must be an ardent Ayn Rand fan. If you are, join the club!! If not, please read “The Fountainhead” and “Atlas Shrugged” and you will see how amazingly Rand mirrors your thoughts and logic.

    There will always be people mocking you, attacking you, making fun of you, critizing you personally (rather than taking apart your logic), just because they don’t agree with you.
    Such people are not worth your time, breath or keystrokes🙂 Just don’t bother, ignore them, do your own thing and be happy. (a la Howard Roark in Fountainhead.)

    It’s good to see more and more people (like you) thinking and having minds of their own, rather than being dumb puppets believing whatever they are told, and blindly swaying with ideological winds. Humanity still has some hope🙂

  73. rags permalink
    February 2, 2009 2:03 pm

    A slight digression but Howard Roark “happy”? From what I’ve read in the Fountainhead he’s the saddest creature on earth living in his own deluded “objectivity” surrounding by a group of monolithic, one dimensional characters…. Sorry, but that’s just my view on Fountainhead. If everyone lived like Roark there would be no assocations, community, co-operation or humanity. Just islands of human beings believing in the perfection of his/her own “objectivity”.

    Thanks rags for putting across something I felt too. I personally believe in liberty and agree with a lot of what DD said, but certainly do not think of Rand’s world as utopia. – Nita.

  74. vasudev permalink
    February 2, 2009 8:56 pm

    TDD…obviously our thoughts and ideas don’t match…and in this case they won’t. So chill! Individuals like us can opine on obscure colums and blogs read only by intellectuals who are too insignificant and lazy to make any difference to the electoral outcome. So neither is your idea of making India a Pub-land with sex and sin galore gonna work nor is mine which thinks India should revert to old classical dances, kathaks and girls have better things to do than spend evenings in pubs boozing themselves to fantasy land.

    So…just chill!

  75. February 2, 2009 9:16 pm

    Good tracking of events, Nita. It is really horrifying to see the growing intolerance.😦

  76. Shashank permalink
    February 2, 2009 10:15 pm

    There is a saying in USA, If some thing is not broken do not try to fix it.

    Few Illetrate class 8 failed unemployed people not having any work to do had made a group to save the hindu culture from Pubs, once they will impose their fear on the society what will happen next, extortion hafta wasooli and all that,

    This is something which we should refrain our selves,
    Reading a book to see what is right and what is wrong, Islamic teachers do this very frequenty like to take photo is against islamic.
    Now some people inspired from these people and came to this conclusion that Pubs are bad.

    Drinking was in the human culture from very beginning, people drink all the time and no one can stop that, Army gives Drinks to their soilders free. Drinking or Pubs are not that important question, the most important question is this wheter this country will be ruled by the goons o by the Law. Any one who will be able to gather few people gets the licence to take the city on rampage.
    Is this the way we are going to solve our problems, and for any questions hiding behind the hindu culture.

    As I told these people wanar sena wo attacked an small Pub in Manglore should be adviced to try the same on people like Vijay Mallya(liquer king) or on Army, will they do the same. will they?I thing they won’t. The situation will be different then. Either they will be in Hospital or behind the bars. Raam sena ka ram naam satya ho jaiga.

    If some one my female relatives is going to pub it is my headache, we will solve this I will not allow to any person is allowed to hurt her for any damn reason, and how could you allow.
    I can see some people are happily allowing some one to kick their womans from Ram sena type of people. Today this is a reason tomaarow the action will be same or even worst just the reason would be different.

  77. openlight permalink
    February 3, 2009 2:32 am

    @The Depressed Doormat

    Sex is an fact of life and is not secretive to any one whether in past (sex mags) or now (internet porn). Details about it were available to any one who needed it.

    regarding DPS stuff, just google it and see the video and you will know that sex is not secretive or any discovery trip for them and what they are doing is just for the ‘sake’ of it or better words will be – ‘their individual freedom’. And this freedom you will accept with your girlfriend or even wife but will always disallow your child to take up and that’s why aparna bedi’s father committed suicide after this incident. Society has its unwritten rules to follow.

    I didn’t said of curbing individual freedom or choice but, our society or country acts too slowly against any ill of the society.

    Illiteracy,poverty are still there and now morality is going down in society. I am not authority to teach you or any one else about it but our culture or followings have impressions of our past which can not change overnight.

    This ‘individual freedom’ is totally applicable if you are out of ambit of this society (Taslima Nasreen . Salman Rushdie had shown such ‘freedom’)

    Every change takes time to come and incidents like these make it quick. But, still I again convey that

    1. pub culture is western off shot
    2. It is an individualistic pleasure place
    3. Indian culture is plural and believes in family and community welfare.
    4. Pub culture of late has degraded to sex shops and drug outlets of late if not all.
    5. Drug addicts and drunkards are increasing.

  78. February 3, 2009 2:48 am

    @Vasudev:

    I am not going to chill. So stop policing not just how I should think, but just how I should feel as well. Does this have an end? And you know why I know that my way will survive in the end?

    It is called evolution.

    As for the art and dances you talk about, I have nothing against BN and kathak. The point I am making is that you have no right to decide for me that somehow kathak is superior or morally more correct than ballet.

    And if you are for “some level” of moral policing, let me educate you in some of the most base realities of your beloved farce of a religion.

    Kathakscapare rajan sravanasca vanaukasahadivyakhyanani ye ca’pi pathanti madhuram dvijaha. Translated, the women danced for the the king. That does not sound much different from a dance bar. And who is to say that these women didn’t also please kings in other senses? Religion is always careful to leave those out. And in case you are wondering, this is a quote from the maha (yeah right!) bharat.

    Ever heard of the term tawaif? That is what kathak dancers during the mughal periods were. Or “nautch”, the anglicized version of the hindi/urdu word. The point I am making, is that your beloved kathak and BN, that you seem to know so little about, has benefited greatly from the carnal tendencies of our lord and masters.

    @openlight: No comment. Raising the same points I have already rebuked is not debating or discussing, it is deluding.

    @Nita: I apologize. I thought I had gotten it out of my system. I guess not. I’m going to stay away from your blog for a few days so that these people can beat their women up real good. I will then return and we can pretend this never happened.

    Also, I have an excruciatingly painful task of re-connecting with my dozen or so bastard children, which vasudev’s perfect children (and their friends) have so rightly pointed out, I probably have. Oh! such a shame for my parents to have such a characterless son! Oops. My bad. It is only the women that are characterless. Fine, 2 things on my to do, have to beat my characterless “mates” too.

  79. vasudev permalink
    February 3, 2009 11:35 pm

    Hey TDD…i ain’t prescribing a spell of vanavas for you, especially since Nita would hate me for that, you all being her oldest friends and co-bloggers. I am sure you consider all these happenings as some friendly banter. Well…that piece in old sanskrit(i think) about Kathak was informative. Hope you were able to connect with your 12 wanton children?
    Right! if you find the freezer too depressingly cold i don’t mind going in there myself…hehe!

    • February 4, 2009 9:38 am

      Vasudev, that exchange between you and DD was more than just friendly banter. It was an argument but I am relieved that it’s over now. These things happen in the blogsphere more often than you can imagine! I am glad you hold no hard feelings. Cheers.

  80. February 5, 2009 8:55 am

    I was just “article hopping” when I came across this (obviously mis-categorized quote).

    “Civilization is a youth with a Molotov cocktail in his hand. Culture is the Soviet tank or L.A. cop that guns him down.”
    – Edward Abbey (American Writer 1927-1989)

    I cannot find a more apt quote for this article even if I had tried!

    Look here for more, just so that there is no miscommunication about the context.

    http://www.solstice.us/abbey/episodes_visions.html

  81. Nisha permalink
    February 5, 2009 10:04 pm

    The “obscenity law” based on which the police harass couples is from 1860!

    I know that in manufacturing industries the “Standard Operating Procedure” for the manufacturing procedure and “Specifications” for the manufactured substances need to be reviewed and changes made to keep it up-to-date based on new developments. This review is compulsory and each document will have a preset date for its review.

    Don’t we have something like that with our laws???

  82. February 9, 2009 7:20 pm

    It si mind set and the problem of politics/double standards.
    Maharashtra Govt did whatever they could to close the dance bars for the reasons best known to them.Thousounds of poor girls making a living from the dance bars were left jobless.It is the same Govt who is going all out to legalise the live-in-relationship.Can some-one explain this?
    What happened in Hyderabad was disgusting.Was’nt the CM protecting those goondas.?Before Congress could even a issue a political statement , Rajasthan CM also made his intentions clear on Pub-culture.
    Fault lies with us.We vote in such leaders who instead of Governing the state become heads of moral policing.We the people, have to change the way we look at our elected representatives.

  83. vasudev permalink
    February 11, 2009 10:22 am

    it was only yesterday i saw a clip of what happened in the mangalore pub and now i am able to connect the relationship of pink slip with ram sene and the pub incident.

    i do not know how many of you have seen the clip but those who saw it must have noticed a fleeing female whose pants were almost down below her hips and…she wasn’t wearing any slip at all! (pink or otherwise).

    so now nisha jose or whomsoever, would want to send all those unwanted slips (which they anyway do not wish to wear to pubs or anywhere) to ram sene with the serene thought that these could at least be distributed to the poor modesty blaises of india who cannot afford to BUY slips.

  84. February 12, 2009 12:21 am

    By the way, is it Ram Sene or Ram Sena? I’ve read both versions in many different newspapers, and seems that our esteemed journalists can’t even get the name right. Or are both names valid? I’ll be glad if someone can explain this discrepancy.

  85. wishtobeanon permalink
    February 12, 2009 2:22 am

    Amit, ‘Sene'(prononunced as ‘Say.nay’) is the Kannada version of ‘Sena’.

  86. wishtobeanon permalink
    February 12, 2009 2:24 am

    Oops, I don’t know how that period got there – ‘Saynay’

  87. February 12, 2009 3:11 am

    wishtobeanon, thanks. I was wondering if Kannada played a role in that difference.🙂

  88. Arjun permalink
    February 17, 2009 4:18 pm

    Culture (according to Wikipedia) is –
    the set of shared attitudes, values, goals, and practices that characterizes an institution, organization or group.
    Culture is not imposed upon a group of people. I think it is pretty obvious that if thousands of people throng the pubs andnightclubs, (that generally insist on ‘couple entry’ only…hence 50% female population) that this is part of our culture. Just because a group of people does not like it, does not authorise them to stop anyone from adopting this “culture”. In olden times (and also in some places now) Hindus practiced Sati. That was part of our culture. Are we going to start throwing women onto their husbands’ funeral pyres now in an attempt to protect our culture? Are we going to seriously enforce the oppressive caste system? Is one part society going to take a shower everytime a person of the lower caste crosses his path?

    Lets get one thing straight. Culture is a social ‘phenomena’ (for lack of a better word.). It evolves based on what people accept as acceptable social practice and beliefs. What the Sri Ram Sene did is just violent propaganda. One cannot “allow” or “disallow” a culture to evolve. One can discourage the evolution of something by not supporting it. One can choose to sit at home and enjoy a family night in, or one can choose to peacefuly protest against it. But no one can go out and beat people up and force them to behave in a certain way. Then what differentiates “the largest democracy” from any dictatorial state?

    I think people should just face the fact that if people want to sit with their significant others in a park, drink at a bar, dance in a club…they are doing it because they want to. The fact of the matter is that a lot of us want to hold hands, sit with our girlfriends and boyfriends, enjoy a drink or two, dance the night away and this is part of our lifestyle (or culture). It CANNOT be against our culture, simply because so many people have accepted it and are practicing it.

  89. Milind Kher permalink
    March 5, 2009 7:21 pm

    The moral police show a gender bias when they come out against pub culture.

    According to them, it is ok for men to drink, and not for women. If women drink, they need to be attacked!!

    This can only be countered if the authorities show a nil tolerance for intolerance. It is high time. We need to prevent Talibanization of India

    • Abdullah K. permalink
      November 3, 2009 2:41 am

      The [im]moral police attack not only women, but men as well. A few days after the Mangalore pub incident, a Rama Sene mob charged on a brother-sister duo, beating the brother black-and-blue for the ‘indecency’ of being with a girl. It is only after the girl started screaming “its my younger brother” that they stopped.

      So I think we don’t have to make it a feminist issue all the time, pretending it is only the women who are harassed by these so called ‘guardians of culture’.

  90. August 20, 2009 10:33 pm

    “Mob culture vs pub and mall culture”

    “Mob culture”
    I don’t believe in this culture where group of men will be thrashing anyone they come across even the real culprits also.We got 24/7 police helpline.People should call police rather making a street justice on their own.

    “Pub Culture”
    Pub culture is necessary for the urban cities to have some recreation.Pub culture is necessary for all income groups.Government should help in establishing centers for recreation even for poor as they work so hard and in the evening will have some recreation & relief.Infact hindu culture approves women to drink.

    “Mall Culture”
    This is absolutely necessary for indian weather conditions as we have a humid and hot weather for pleasant shopping.Some urban people are making fun of rural people in the malls where the rural farmers come from far away villages to see these new malls in their proud state capitals.Migrnats & Educated urban people should know how to respect their fellow rural indians.Infact some rural farmers are richer than these urban class indians.

    “Parks”
    It is very sad that indian urban centers lack space for lovers.I had observed indian familes always think lovers in the park resuts in Obscenity.I dont believe in this.If possible Their should be parks exclusive for lovers of all ages if indian families think this is a problem then they should rethink & accomodate.

    “Dance Bars”
    Dance bars are part of our hindu culture.I can’t understand why these dance bars had been shutdown.It provides entertainment for the men who are not handsome and can seek enjoyment with money.This is a part of hindu culture prevalent from ancient India.

    Regarding internet cafes i am confused if government can offer better places for lovers i dont think lovers will take shelter in these cafes.

    I heard of sivaji park in mumbai where they had converted a bench with a two sitter to single sitter to avoid lovers.This is not correct.

  91. vasudev permalink
    August 22, 2009 11:46 am

    [I heard of sivaji park in mumbai where they had converted a bench with a two sitter to single sitter to avoid lovers.This is not correct.]

    wrong! actually it is to avoid lovers sitting away from each other. now the girl has to actually sit on the boy’s lap. isn’t that cool?

    • August 22, 2009 12:32 pm

      Still girls can sit on boys lap in two sitter bench.Some indian boys may not like to display their love in public due to culural aspects or anything ..and like to be decent for them two sitter is necessary.

      • vasudev permalink
        August 22, 2009 1:06 pm

        O! mumbai boys and girls are ‘awara’ with regard to expressing love. they have no such cultural inhibitions as you can see very open display of cupid’s affairs at any park, whether visibly manifasted or not.

  92. vasudev permalink
    August 22, 2009 1:03 pm

    kumar..i was just pulling your leg! i don’t even know that they converted two seaters to single seater. anyway, imagine the maharashtra government did that as i said. can you imagine a romantic mantralaya taking on the wrath of balasaheb by exibiting themselves publically ? should happen in india perhaps 50 yrs hence, when the older generations all die and wither away! gives me an idea for a funny cartoon.

  93. vasudev permalink
    August 22, 2009 1:07 pm

    manifasted nahi! manifested

    • August 22, 2009 1:37 pm

      Well, We need to respect the sentiments of all the indians the left,center and the right wing people.Moral policing from any side will only come into effect when one class of people intrude into another class of people. Like here their is no need for the Sri Ram sena or the shiv Sena to intrude and show their way of culture to some urban modern Indians who want to live a western or their kind of lifestyle that too intheir places like pubs or discos.

      Similarly, when a urban or so called modern people intrude into the places of the cultured indians than moral policing will come into force.We need to understand the sentiments of the indian cultured people and behave accordingly as per the place & culture.

      As modern indians are more educated they should be more responsible.It is just a matter of tolerance & when one crosses the age and become responsible automatically people will like to be more moderate and love to lead a simple righteous life.Infact we should be thankful that God had given us a chance to be in this lovely country with rich traditions and culture.

      Nothing like older generation …we shouldn’t think that older generation should die as early as possible…They should live as long as possible and we should be ready to serve them.

      • vasudev permalink
        August 22, 2009 2:17 pm

        wonderful thoughts! hard to find such noble sentiments anymore!

        • August 22, 2009 2:42 pm

          Thanks Vasu, Their are millions of Indians with such kind of thoughts,After Pubs and Disco culture the landing place for all these so called modern Indians is “Art of living ” or Sadhguru Jaggi Vausdev’s isha foundation Or Amma Or Oneness university or baba ramdev and lot more noble Indian Guru’s/swami ji’s who are their to show the spiritual path.

          Luckily most of the modern Hindus are following the righteous path after landing in these institutions.And their is nothing noble in this as every human being normal behaviour is the noble behaviour.

        • August 22, 2009 6:02 pm

          Thanks Vasu for your words.Their is nothing noble about it i feel millions of indians share similar thoughts.Modern culture should never be a yardstick to rate an Indian.We have our own indian culture to rate Indians.

      • Vinod permalink
        November 4, 2009 11:10 am

        Kumar, you probably don’t realize it but when you appeal to ‘God’ you are as ‘western’, if not more, than most ‘modern urban Indians’. Pagans never appealed to ‘God’ in the form of a singular number with a capital G.

        I recommend SN Balaganghadhara’s ‘The blindness of the heathens’ to understand what I wrote.

  94. November 4, 2009 10:13 am

    Nita, I have been following the comments via email and had to make an effort to not comment…

    Today, I just wonder how in our culture we think nothing of
    -watching women humiliated in public, or being beaten- in fact battered by their husbands,
    -we watch children being abused,
    -we watch men molesting or passing remarks at girls young enough to be their grand daughters,
    -people spitting anywhere, or smoking, drinking, fighting

    All this is fine by us – but we see a young couple show affection, and we feel our culture is threatened.

    We forget that basically we were an open, tolerant, inclusive culture.

  95. wourmis permalink
    March 23, 2010 8:10 pm

    Well done Nita! Great article and OMG i coudlnt believe they did moral policing to such an extent….very sad and amusing as well.

    Like someone earlier said these “moral upholders” donot have a life, no girl, no job and nothing to do so when they see others enjoying life, they get frustrated and incidents like Mangalore pub attacks happen.
    Sadly what they dont realise is that the culture they are trying to uphold is the Victorian prudishness of the 18th century which is ingrained in their mind as “Indian Culture” hahaha funny isnt it??

    Technically a democracy serves the people, not restrict its citizens freedom coz when it does, it isnt a democracy, its a sort of dictatorship (which i believe India NEEDS TEMPORARILY but someone with a broad mind should lead the country until everything is right, then back to democracy)
    A government can only ban certain things if it threatens the nation’s security, and frankly pub culture is neither threatening, nor bad.

    At someone who wrote about Lord Ram : Even Ram and Sita shared a meaningful relationship of love and trust and i believe Ram respects women. Even Ravana respects women i guess because when he kidnapped Sita and left her in the care of his servant, he said “Give whatever she wants except freedom, and if anyone dares to harm her, i will kill him” So you see he was also respectful of women (till some extent :D)

    So this moral policing is at the end all about political mileage, frustration and controlling people PERIOD

    BTW do you guys know that Muthalik isnt married? Haha guess even the conservative women dont like him😀 LOLOL

  96. Sreyam permalink
    February 9, 2012 8:37 pm

    I fully agree with you in that social repression, particularly sexual repression breeds violence towards “non-Indian culture” in general and women in particular. The perpetrators are mostly men (although I hear women are involved too) who cannot bear to see other men and women enjoying themselves in the company of the opposite sex. But then, any society that forcibly puts barriers between the sexes is bound to have such deviant practices where any girl going to a bar is, at the best case, considered immoral, and at the worst case beaten up. To ensure a more free society I suggest the following measures:
    1. Government schools should be made co-educational. Boys and girls interacting from a young age should teach young children that boys and girls are mostly the same and eliminate the concept of the all-embracing “other” that pervades all discussion and thought about the opposite sex.
    2. Hooligans on the street should be the ones police control rather than couples expressing their affection in public.
    3. The government should absolutely NOT condone hooliganism and support the subjugation of our women and men too.

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