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Group recruits volunteers to wage war on ‘love jihad’

Right wing group Bajrang Dal recruits volunteers to wage war on ‘love jihad’ in Uttar Pradesh

  • There have been increasing reports in India of young women allegedly being lured into converting to Islam to marry Muslim men 
  • The Supreme Court has heard a number of high profile cases this year
  • Now  Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP)’s youth wing, Bajrang Dal, has started recruiting volunteers in Uttar Pradesh’s Agra to stop what it calls ‘love jihad’ 
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Right-wing group Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP)’s youth wing, Bajrang Dal, has started recruiting volunteers in Uttar Pradesh’s Agra for an outfit specifically designed to counter alleged cases of ‘love jihad’. 

The young recruits will undergo arms training as well under the drive being called ‘Bahu Lao, Beti Bachao’. 

A registration fee of Rs 10 is being charged from Hindu men willing to join the outfit for ‘saving their bahubeti (women)’ from ‘falling prey to love jihad’. 

The drive, started by Bajrang Dal, targeted 2,00,000 men in Agra

Local Bajrang Dal members say these women are ‘lured by some Muslim men in order to change their religion’. 

The volunteers from this outfit will be trained to use swords and other weapons in order to intervene if needed, they added. 

Some reports, however, had earlier cited some Hindu groups as saying that they will encourage Muslim women to marry Hindu men under the ‘Bahu lao, Beti Bachao’ drive and even assist them in getting married. 

Camps for the purpose have already started in Agra from December 3 and about 1,000 have registered for arms training. 

Earlier, this drive was supposed to be held from November 19 to December 19. 

‘We are in danger. This network is spreading from Kashmir to Kanyakumari. It’s time to wake up, otherwise our girls will be lured in the name of love, and they will be pushed into prostitution,’ Abhisek Saxena, Bajrang Dal co-convener from Naamner, Agra, told India Today TV.

And Saxena is not satisfied with the current turnout. He said the drive targeted 2,00,000 men from Agra alone, while he hoped more will join from adjoining cities. 

Certain quarters view these measures as an effort to polarise the young in Bharatiya Janata Party’s favour in the name of Hindutva. The target is the 2019 Lok Sabha poll which they say will be fought on the Hindu-Muslim card.