VHP organises Muslim-free 'mehendi camps' in UP's Muzaffarnagar
VHP, Bajrang Dal and the Rashtriya Sevika Samiti are organising camps to ensure Muslim artists are not applying henna for Hindu women—a popular ritual for Karwa Chauth
The Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), Bajrang Dal and Rashtriya Sevika Samiti are jointly organising ‘mehendi camps’ at 11 locations in Uttar Pradesh's Muzaffarnagar to urge people not to allow Muslim artists to apply henna on the hands of Hindu women.
The ‘camps’ are being organised on the occasion of the Hindu festival of Karwa Chauth.
Describing it as a part of their two-year-old campaign to protect Hindu girls from getting targeted for religious conversion, VHP’s Prant Sah Gau Raksha Pramukh in Muzaffarnagar, Maheshwari, explained that shopkeepers hired Muslims as henna artists, who then used the opportunity to lure Hindu girls and women on the pretext of offering them their services at lower prices.
“Muslim boys hide their identities by wearing kalawas (sacred thread Hindus tie to their wrists) and exchange their phone numbers with Hindu girls. This was the first step of love jihad,” Maheshwari said and added that even the entry of Muslim girls into these camps was banned.
Maheshwari, however, could not provide the details of even a single instance. “Such things seldom come on record because girls don’t like to speak about it,” she added.
Karwa Chauth, notably, is observed only by married Hindu women.
District magistrate Arvind Malappa Bangari refused to comment on the ‘camps’ for the moment. “I have come to know about it and can comment on it only after gathering more information,” he said.
West UP in-charge of the Kranti Sena, Lalit Mohan, said the camps started on Sunday and would continue till Karwa Chauth on Tuesday.
He said that initially shopkeepers were persuaded not to hire Muslim henna artists and now camps were being organised to offer people the alternative on their doorstep.
Maulana Nazar, state vice-president of the Jamiat-e-Ulema Hind, on Wednesday, 1 November, denounced the boycott of Muslims and held the VHP and other organisations for spreading hatred in the society. “They are destroying the social fabric,” he said and added that such a programme was in sheer violation of the Constitution, which does not discriminate against anyone based on their religion and caste.