MANGALORE (Web Desk) – In the midst of several social media campaigns against moral policing in India, another shameful incident has come to light from Karnataka.
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A youth, identified as Shakeer, was tied to a pole at Babugudde near Attavar, stripped and thrashed for accompanying a Hindu woman, the India Times reported.
The 29-year-old man was in his car with the woman on Monday evening when he was surrounded and attacked by the mob.
The attackers thrashed the man, stripped him and paraded him through the crowded market area before tying him to an electricity pole.
The beating continued for nearly an hour. The police arrived when the visuals were flashed on local cable channels.
The man told the police that he was attacked when he was on his way to an ATM to withdraw money for the woman, who had asked for a loan.
The mob allegedly also humiliated the young woman when she tried to stop the assault.
Meanwhile, police have started investigating the incident and arrested 13 people in connection with the case so far.
Several right-wing activists allegedly attacked the boy.
This is not the first incident when such radical forces have attacked boys and girls on spotting them together.
According Karnataka Forum for Communal Harmony, as many as 12 moral policing incidents have been reported this year while there were 39 reported in 2014 and 45 in 2013 in the region.
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“We have arrested 13 people in connection with the incident. Some of the arrested men belong to the Bajrang Dal. We are investigating if the incident was motivated by the Bajrang Dal,” S Murugan, Commissioner of police in Mangalore was quoted telling the Indian Express.
The Bajrang Dal is a rightwing Hindu outfit affiliated to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, the ideological mentor of the ruling BJP.
Mangalore, a city familiar with religious polarization, has seen many moral policing incidents in the past.
In 2009, activists of the notorious Sri Ram Sene group stormed a pub, dragged women by their hair and slapped them, accusing them of denigrating their culture.