UP community bans mobiles for girls
An influential committee of vaishyas in Uttar Pradesh has asked school girls from the community to stop using cell phones to save themselves from falling prey to "love jihad".
In what is perhaps a first for an urban association with such reach and influence, the Akhil Bharitiya Vaishya Ekta Parishad (ABVEP), a committee of vaishyas (mostly traders by caste), has decided to ban the use of mobile phones by school-going girls and teenagers, staring with Agra.
At a meeting of traders and industry welfare associations in the city, attended by more than thousand participants including Union minister for micro, small and medium enterprises, Kalraj Mishra, ABEVP national president Sumant Gupta said the move to ban cellphones for the community's girls was needed as the Samajwadi Party government in the state offered "special privileges to a particular community", leaving other communities vulnerable.
This is perhaps the first time such a move is being discussed by an urban body — unlike khaps — with relatively wealthy members. The caste group hopes to keep girls up to Class XII free of mobile phones, and thus less vulnerable to the lures of men from a particular community.