mid-day editorial: Make V-Day about Valentines, not vandals
To protest Valentine's Day celebrations, members of the Bharat Hindu Front performed marriage rituals between a dog and a donkey in Chennai yesterday
To protest Valentine's Day celebrations, members of the Bharat Hindu Front performed marriage rituals between a dog and a donkey in Chennai yesterday. Their protest, of course, was about V-Day being against Indian culture. The dog and the donkey were garlanded with flowers and had their foreheads marked with turmeric. In a separate incident, Bajrang Dal members allegedly harassed couples at the Sabarmati riverfront in Ahmedabad. The police later detained the miscreants. Bajrang Dal staged a protest against Valentine's Day in Hyderabad too.
The incidents took us back to the days in Mumbai when the moral brigade would threaten all those who dared to celebrate the day of love. Stores selling mushy teddy bears, cards and felt hearts would have their glass fronts smashed or have to be on extra alert mode to duck a stray stone thrown from outside. Canoodling couples would be the target of mobs all in the name of… you guessed it, Indian culture.
Then, the so-called keepers of morals and safe guarders of this ephemeral thing called culture were from political parties who realized it was good publicity going against V-Day. That is until one day, they realized that breaking shops and threatening couples is no longer giving them the mileage they wanted in the media. The novelty has worn off, the people have woken up, and the sheer marketing hype of V-Day has swept everything aside, including stones on the roads.
Detain disrupters, blackmailers and miscreants elsewhere if they try to bully, harass and blackmail persons marking V-Day peacefully in their own way. These antics are not funny, justified or should not be diminished as mischief. These are crimes; treat the perpetrators as such.