The Talli-ban

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A landmark judgement was delivered today in that the courts ruled that kissing in public by an young married couple is not obscene. [Link]

It is inconceivable how, even if one were to take what is stated in the FIR to be true, an expression of love by a young married couple would attract offence of obscenity and trigger the coercive process of law,”

[Music: Main talli main talli main talli ho gayeee]

Presenter: Welcome to GBTV’s special panel where we discuss public kisses, pub culture and whether the initiative to “ban” talli girls would create a “Talli-ban” culture in India.

Tonight we have with us lawyer Inderjit Chaddha famous for being on the losing side of the Damini case and whose business motto is “Sue karo, sue karo, karo soo soo” with a specialization in screwing pesky bloggers, typical park-bench-old-man Mr. Damle (65), confirmed bachelor Chowbey Sahab (45) and “Ugly-Pagli” Anjali Devi (undisclosed age) from the local Mahila Mandal.

Let’s start with you typical park-bench-old-man Mr. Damle.

“Why do you think the honorable judge has specifically mentioned an “young couple”? Why specifically do you think that old couples have been left out of the ambit of this judgement?”

Mr. Damle: “Hah. That’s because old and middle-aged married couples do not kiss each other in public. They hardly kiss each other in private. Trust me, after a few years even a Fighter Bidi feels smoother on your lips than those of the old hag’s. Hah. And if you ever catch a slightly older couple kissing in public, let me tell you they may be married but not to each other. ”

Now Chowbey sahab, TOI says:

The newly married duo was picked up by ASI Vidhyadhar Singh of Dwarka police station on September 4 last year after he claimed to have found them “sitting in an objectionable position near a Metro pillar and kissing each other due to which passersby were feeling bad.”

What are your thoughts on this issue?

Chowbey sahab: “Of course people have a right to feel bad. What this couple was doing was just like eating a five-course dinner in front of starving children of Somalia. If that is not a vulgarity, then what is.”

Anjali Devi [interrupting]: “I think we are missing the point here. What is most important is that a recognition has been made of the need for society and law to distinguish between expressions of love between married couples and between immoral love-birds who go about singing “Kahe do to aaj duniya se, aaj baja doon band, tu mera boyfriend main tera girlfriend” and then do a lot of “gaana” and definitely “bajanaa”. We may suck at catching terrorists or murderers but it is imperative that full police resources be devoted to checking that every man and woman that walk within two feet of each other are either brother-sister or husband-wife. ”

Mr. Chadda, what is your legal opinion on this?

Inderjit Chadda: I would first like to read out the following quote.

Speaking to Times City, the advocate explained, “Obscenity charges get attracted when the act is so obscene that it encourages depravity or annoys the public

By this definition, some may claim that those women attacked and molested in the pub in Mangalore should be charged with obscenity. First of all, they definitely annoyed the public( the public who leer at women going into bars and dream that they can have them) by not dancing with the aforementioned public. And thus by ignoring them, they definitely encouraged the depravity that followed.

Chowbey sahab: You must understand that pubs are not part of Indian culture. Village women in India never have liquor and will never dance around with men. That happens only in the West. I am glad that these men from Ram Sena really defined what Indian culture truly is by beating, kicking helpless women. I am afraid not many people understand this.

I am glad to note that for once our politicians are on the right side. Gehlot sahab has said that girls and boys holding hands is not proper. I agree. The only time girls and boys may hold hands is when they play “Ringa ringa roses pocket full of poses” but only later if they do not “all fall down” on each other in a “husha husha” fashion.

Mr. Damle: And you must understand that girls should be kept out of pubs for their protection only. As this ex-DIG says: “After drinking, boys lose their controls and can be doing anything to girls”. I mean having been a boy myself once, I totally agree.

Chowbey sahab: I would like to point out that the majority of Indians agree with us. The Chief Minister of Karnataka has vowed to stop pub culture in the state. Its only people who stay in flats who condone this kind of behavior and fail to see why it’s my business as well as yours to protect our “culture” , to ensure that young people do not commit the same sins that I could never commit, despite my best efforts. In this respect, I totally agree with Valke sahab, 40 year old patriot who had learnt everything there was to learn in this world by Class 5, and his friends.

These girls come from all over India, drink, smoke, and walk around in the night spoiling the traditional girls of Mangalore. A girl from Punjab was drugged, raped, and killed last month. There was no hue and cry then. Why should girls go to pubs? Are they going to serve their future husbands alcohol? Should they not be learning to make chapattis? Bars and pubs should be for men only. We wanted to ensure that all women in Mangalore are home by 7 pm,” says Pravin Valke a 40-year-old, fifth-standard drop-out, who is a founding member of the Sri Rama Sene. [Link]

And what I like about these people is how they have expressed their shock and disgust at the debauchery all around with dignity and restraint in consonance with the Indian culture they so claim to love.

One of his associates boasts of an incident where they made some girls urinate in their pants after threatening to beat them up for going around with boys from other communities. “No one dares to tease girls. No one plays loud music in cars around colleges,” he says. [Link]

Stopping girls from being teased by making girls urinate in their pants….now that’s some Indian culture. Kya idea sirji. It should make all of us so proud.

Presenter: That’s all the time we have folks. Coming up after these commercial messages, is a special hidden-camera report on loo breaks (Yeh I loo I loo kya hain yeh I loo) and their significance for Indian democracy.

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146 thoughts on “The Talli-ban

  1. apparently,farmers commiting suicide or children dying of malnutrition or naxals gaining control of a quarter of the country is lower in priority to some people having a drink

  2. These cases really scare me ! There must be an end to this. The problem is the pub going type have little or no representation whatsoever in politics or administration.

  3. Spot on!! I’d commented on my blog on the Ram Sena attack. I was sickened to know they went beating up women. I mean, the last time we had an organized group of people hitting women for not sticking to culture, they were bearded and carried AK-47s. Good to hear of the Delhi court’s decision – somebody somewhere understands the meaning of the word freedom.

  4. Digest this : even the NCW has blamed women for ‘provocating’ the mob against them, in M’lore!!! Some wise oldie has v. truely said – women are their own greatest obstacles in the path towards empowerment.

  5. pathetic state of affairs. I just don’t understand what difference does it make if someone celebrates Valentine’s Day? I mean aren’t there more pressing problems in India now? Ram Sena, Shiv Sena – they need a new avocation. Dumb followers of stupid politicians.

  6. @GB:is Sri Ram Sene a take on Dr. Sriram Nene.
    @Sanghamitra: I don’t think going to pubs symbolises women empowerment. There are serious issues to be dealt with here. Yes going to pubs does symbolise freedom.
    Actually I am not surprised by what has happened in Mangalore. We all knew what the actual Sri Ram’s Sena consisted of….They cause nothing but nuisance.
    But I am scared that these people can undertake a ‘curative strike’ on me because even I do not follow Indian culture. To start with I do not wear a dhoti.

  7. An interesting post. Some politically-incorrect observations from this twenty-something, employed, married woman from Karnataka shouldn’t be out of place then.

    When it’s fashionable to publicly praise the emperor’s new clothes and promote women’s empowerment through drinking alcohol, I will refrain from doing so.

    I have seen the videos on TV and read the news articles and will try to list my thoughts on this issue, as best as I can –

    – I am glad that the Karnataka police swung into action and arrested the SRS members. They dared to break the law and will pay for it.

    – Nobody should force anybody to leave pubs, if they are of the legal drinking age. If you SRS-wallahs want to oppose drinking, use Gandhi-giri or protest peacefully outside the pubs but don’t touch anyone. If these youngsters want to get drunk everyday, then so be it. After all, the right to drink is a fundamental right, right?

    – Those who imbibe the spirits too liberally could end up having health issues, automobile accidents or just get pregnant. So what? It’s their problem, not yours.

    – In the videos, I observed that the SRS members walked into the pub and asked everyone there to leave the pub. Though the audio is not clear, it appears that there is some heated arguments and then some pub-goers appear to shoot off their mouths and tell these SRS lads to mind their own business (in a not-so-polite words?). The melee begins.

    – I also observed that the pub-goers (who were chased out or slapped) included both men and women. While it is a case of assault (and should be prosecuted thus), I don’t understand why the media is trying portray this as a “guys slapped only girls” issue. Liars !

    – The media kept trying to portray this as a sexual molestation/groping incident and kept harping that some girls were molested in front of the camera. But after the confrontation, the videos show the pub-goers sitting on the floor or show the running pub-goers getting taps/slaps on the back of their heads as they exit the pub. Is all this talk of sexual molestation/groping is the media’s attempt to add “spice” to the story?

    – In the videos, SRS members appear to be college-going students of modest, lower middle-class means. Some SRS members carried backpacks (used to carry books) which means that they were either going to or coming from a nearby college. Were they ticked off that while they were off to studiously attend college classes on Saturdays, some of their elitist, rich peers were out there drinking, dancing, having fun? Such kill-joys.

    – Would the media have made a big hue and cry if some women activists had slapped the girls in the pub? In 1996, the media were hesitantly sympathetic when stick-wielding and broom-wielding, screaming women activists trashed Miss World billboards and tried to attack the Miss World contest venue in my home-state.

    This is where the SRS members erred in their radical calculations – if they had brought along some of their sisters and mothers to slap the girls in the pub, then nobody would have believed this “men slap girls”/”gender-based assault” story.

    – Those who use the word “Taliban” indiscriminately or given to hyperbole should know that if these Mangalore lads had been “Taliban”, then some heads would have rolled in that pub, all the pub-goers would have been beheaded and their heads put on a stake.

    A slap is the same as a beheading? Then how many of us are guilty of beheading (oops ..I meant hitting or slapping), someone?

    Some of us don’t have the guts to call the murderous Mumbai attackers with the same appellation. So, let’s just vent our frustration on the little guys that won’t come after you or slit our throats.

    Calling these SRS gadflies as “Taliban” is the height of exaggeration.

    – “5th standard dropout”? The condescending, elitist tone adopted by the writer (Mr.Johnson T.A.) towards someone (who was not as privileged or educated as he is), is to be expected.

    – If the SRS wanted to get widespread publicity for their group through such gimmicks, then they have succeeded.

    – If the SRS wanted to make this drinking problem (amongst youngsters) the subject of discussion in everyone’s homes, offices and colleges, then they have succeeded.

    – Indian middle-class parents implicitly trust their children to not lie to them or sneak out to pubs. Because of this one incident, most middle-class parents have woken up to the possibility of their children frequenting pubs during the day or night, while giving alibis of going to college or working late in their IT/BPO jobs. These Nazi-like parents are now going to give deadlines and are going to keep a close eye on their truant children. Shame on these parents !

    – If drinking in pubs is the birthright of every Indian, then why do pub-goers hide this fact from their parents and families? Is it shameful to drink? Is it wrong to drink? Then why do pub-goers never tell their parents the truth – “I’m off to the pub to drink. See you after midnight”. Hypocrites !

    – How many of us hypocrites who would be proud of our mother, if our mother wore miniskirts/tight-jeans and went to pubs? Common, be honest – just visualize your mother wearing miniskirts and guzzling frothy mugs of beer. The reason why our generation turned out good was because our mothers (and fathers) were stellar role-models for us.

    – As a parent I wonder, can pub-goers be good role-models for their children? In particular, would a pub-going girl be a good role-model for her unborn children? Yes, nobody likes to think of getting married or having kids, but just wait – “(Sh)it happens”.

    – I am trying to imagine the future of pub-going youngsters – post marriage. I don’t think it’s easy for anyone to stop drinking – first socially, then habitually. A drinker as a father is bad enough for the family. But a drinking mom? Can you imagine what that would do to the Indian families?

    – I am proud that the Indian family system is a success primarily because of Indian women and our sacrifices and the values we impart to our children.

    – I feel sorry for the increasing-decadent, broken social system in the West (that we are trying to copy mindlessly) with one-third of all pregnancies being of teenaged, unmarried girls – where the boys/men are highly irresponsible and like to sow their oats and impregnate women without taking any responsibility for raising the children born out-of-wedlock.

    And thanks to such selfish/irresponsible men, many women in the west are just reduced to being “merchandise” who have to give out free “samples” to attract potential mates. Should our Indian society disintegrate in such a way?

    – Going to Pubs lead to Women’s Empowerment ? Since when? I hope someone can enlighten me. Because I must have missed out on all those Women’s Empowerment seminars in my college.

    – I can see why the media is ticked off. These shallow journalists often appear to be in the same demographic as these pub-goers in Mangalore. No wonder, the media has jumped with a vengeance and focused the spotlight on a trivial, yes trivial, incident like Mangalore.

  8. @Smitha:

    This isn’t about empowerment, it’s about FREEDOM. A person has the right to go pub-hopping or whatever, without fear of physical reprisals from anyone. The law covers aspects such as closing time, drunken behavior and so on, but nobody should have to fear non-legal figures. If they fear parents/wives/children finding out that’s a personal issue.

    If the SS, sorry SRS people are meek, humble bhola bacchas they would be better off continuing to study or meditate or whatever rather than beat up their bigada hua rich peers.

    Why is this compared to the Taliban? Because they would too go and beat up women for exposing a lock of hair or a toenail. For a male gang to carry out group violence against women is sick, and for them to dictate their place is sicker. People start out like this, beating women up for pub-hopping. It is when people like you condone or dismiss such incidents that they get the courage to start beheading people in public for violating sacred cultural rules or whatever.

    And all your other stuff about pub-culture vs. parents/culture has nothing to do with the present discussion

  9. @Smitha,

    I would request you to watch the linked Youtube video (in the main post) of a girl recounting the incidents of that day so as to know whether molestation indeed take place. (it would be helpful if the linked items are looked into before making a comment) Of course I do understand that that girl could be a pressman in disguise…

    As to the incident being “trivial” and your Manoj-Kumarish idea of the West and the purity of the East, allow me to stay silent.

  10. @ Dibyo
    “The problem is the pub going type have little or no representation whatsoever in politics or administration”.

    But “the pub going type” are very much represented in the media.

    Even though such “moral policing” is very reprehensible in my opinion, I feel, the media went berserk over a couple of rowdies misbehaving in a pub.

    People like Pramod Mutalik ji, who has a sizeable group of dedicated workers, would do better focusing on more pressing issues like kicking out illegal Bangladeshi Islamists and usurping of Hindu shrines by Sufi Muslim charlatans, rather than focus on these petty issues.

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  12. @ Smitha

    I am a doctor, and a reasonably successful one, on all counts. I am also happily married, to another professional. We have both made sacrifices towards our marriage, to equal extents (neither of us think it’s a woman’s special responsibility to make them). We both drink, in moderation (as is recommended by the best medical evidence; alcohol in moderate quantities is cardioprotective and neuroprotective and is part of the Mediterranean and Japanese diets- the healthiest two in the world). We have a wine rack in our living room.

    My father gave me my first little glass of beer when I was 13; he is a social drinker who never exceeds his limits, and a (now retired) honest government doctor himself, a well respected member of his small town community, as his father had been before him. When I started drinking on my own in the 90s, I did so in pubs in Bangalore, where I had gone to study, and made friends with some of the finest intellects I have ever met. All are very successful today. Three have followed their hearts and work in rural India, as doctors and engineers, for little money. They came from educated, high achieving, hard working, middle-class (like me) or upper class (rarely) families. Some of them hid their drinking from their families; most didn’t. I certainly didn’t. My sister drank too, sensibly, in Madras, where she studied.

    My parents never had a problem with it, you see. My mother didn’t like the taste of alcohol much, but my dad loved her to bits. So he had a special drink he made for her, a beer shandy with lots of orange fizz. My mum would happily drink this and keep him company. She was successful and a role model to generations of students herself: a professor of comparative literature who did a PhD at the age of 52. She had to wait to build on an MA finished 26 yrs ago because she wanted us kids to get into the courses we wanted to, before she went back to her first love, studying and researching Kannada and Malayalam and Bengali, as well as English (so she made sacrifices, like you mentioned). We supported her to the hilt. After her PhD, she wanted to go abroad; my dad, now retired, followed her unquestioningly. “It’s her turn” he said.

    In the West, she wore jeans for the first time. Then a knee length skirt and proper stockings. She loved it as much as her starched, crisp Chanderi and Kota sarees. My dad though she looked gorgeous, as we did. She went to her first English pubs at the age of 58, she loved them because they had no loud music. She didn’t have a problem with Indian pubs, only with the music. “Too loud, can’t have a proper conversation” she’d say. But she appreciated them. When she went to Manipal as a visiting speaker, she returned and told me that it was such a wonderful place that she wished she was young again and could be a student again. “And I want to study in that place, she said, the girls are so confident, what’s that world you use? Cool, yes they are cool and so polite and so stylishly dressed. They took me to a pub, with your Appa, Appa loved it of course, six pretty girls with us and whisky. The food was very nice too”. Manipal, is of course, an international University town, and about 50 kms from Mangalore, with even more pubs per square km. It is now in the heart of SRS territory.

    Her father, btw, was a freedom fighter, who had his health destroyed irreparably in British Indian prisons. Which is why, I suspect, she valued her freedoms so much. And her students’ freedoms. And that is perhaps why in supermarkets in London, former students greeted her with screams of delight, husbands and kids in tow. Her old University set up a research centre in her memory last year. I was a guest. Many were poor daughters of fisherfolk, who now dreamt of jobs in call centres and IT. One was one of India’s most famous space scientists, herself from a poor background.

    Standing there and hearing generations of students speak about her, I realized how lucky I was to have her as a role model. Despite her skirts and happy shandy drinking.

  13. @smita

    1> An interesting post. Some politically-incorrect observations from this twenty-something, employed, married woman from Karnataka shouldn’t be out of place then.

    Response: Nope 🙂

    2> When it’s fashionable to publicly praise the emperor’s new clothes and promote women’s empowerment through drinking alcohol, I will refrain from doing so.

    I have seen the videos on TV and read the news articles and will try to list my thoughts on this issue, as best as I can –

    – I am glad that the Karnataka police swung into action and arrested the SRS members. They dared to break the law and will pay for it.

    Response: As they should! Correct.

    3> Nobody should force anybody to leave pubs, if they are of the legal drinking age. If you SRS-wallahs want to oppose drinking, use Gandhi-giri or protest peacefully outside the pubs but don’t touch anyone. If these youngsters want to get drunk everyday, then so be it. After all, the right to drink is a fundamental right, right?

    Response: Right!

    4> Those who imbibe the spirits too liberally could end up having health issues, automobile accidents or just get pregnant. So what? It’s their problem, not yours.

    Response: Auto accident can be urs and mine too. Since roads are not pvt property, it therefore to me matters if you drive drunk and hit me.
    Pregnancy can lead to DNA testing and child support problems later.

    5> In the videos, I observed that the SRS members walked into the pub and asked everyone there to leave the pub. Though the audio is not clear, it appears that there is some heated arguments and then some pub-goers appear to shoot off their mouths and tell these SRS lads to mind their own business (in a not-so-polite words?). The melee begins.

    – I also observed that the pub-goers (who were chased out or slapped) included both men and women. While it is a case of assault (and should be prosecuted thus), I don’t understand why the media is trying portray this as a “guys slapped only girls” issue. Liars !

    Response: That’s a fair point IF thats the case.

    6> The media kept trying to portray this as a sexual molestation/groping incident and kept harping that some girls were molested in front of the camera. But after the confrontation, the videos show the pub-goers sitting on the floor or show the running pub-goers getting taps/slaps on the back of their heads as they exit the pub. Is all this talk of sexual molestation/groping is the media’s attempt to add “spice” to the story?

    Response: Pay more care to witness accounts than media reports.

    7> In the videos, SRS members appear to be college-going students of modest, lower middle-class means. Some SRS members carried backpacks (used to carry books) which means that they were either going to or coming from a nearby college. Were they ticked off that while they were off to studiously attend college classes on Saturdays, some of their elitist, rich peers were out there drinking, dancing, having fun? Such kill-joys.

    – Would the media have made a big hue and cry if some women activists had slapped the girls in the pub? In 1996, the media were hesitantly sympathetic when stick-wielding and broom-wielding, screaming women activists trashed Miss World billboards and tried to attack the Miss World contest venue in my home-state.

    Response: Media has their own agenda. The key therefore is to take media response with a grain of salt and focus on the facts. As NDTV’s media coverage of Gujrat showed, it can be quite one-sided. So choose the media which gives you fact, not bigotry.

    8> This is where the SRS members erred in their radical calculations – if they had brought along some of their sisters and mothers to slap the girls in the pub, then nobody would have believed this “men slap girls”/”gender-based assault” story.

    Response:No. It would have still remained a gender based assault if the girls only were slapped.

    9> Those who use the word “Taliban” indiscriminately or given to hyperbole should know that if these Mangalore lads had been “Taliban”, then some heads would have rolled in that pub, all the pub-goers would have been beheaded and their heads put on a stake.

    A slap is the same as a beheading? Then how many of us are guilty of beheading (oops ..I meant hitting or slapping), someone?
    Some of us don’t have the guts to call the murderous Mumbai attackers with the same appellation. So, let’s just vent our frustration on the little guys that won’t come after you or slit our throats. Calling these SRS gadflies as “Taliban” is the height of exaggeration.

    Response: We are talking about symbolism here. In fact Taliban is the apt word. You are too funny!

    10> “5th standard dropout”? The condescending, elitist tone adopted by the writer (Mr.Johnson T.A.) towards someone (who was not as privileged or educated as he is), is to be expected.

    Response: And whats wrong with that! What should he have called them then- Nobel lauretes?

    11> If the SRS wanted to get widespread publicity for their group through such gimmicks, then they have succeeded.

    – If the SRS wanted to make this drinking problem (amongst youngsters) the subject of discussion in everyone’s homes, offices and colleges, then they have succeeded.

    – Indian middle-class parents implicitly trust their children to not lie to them or sneak out to pubs. Because of this one incident, most middle-class parents have woken up to the possibility of their children frequenting pubs during the day or night, while giving alibis of going to college or working late in their IT/BPO jobs. These Nazi-like parents are now going to give deadlines and are going to keep a close eye on their truant children. Shame on these parents !

    Response: Its a recession market baby:) Nobody would mind the extra buck earned and will be careful with what they spend.

    12> If drinking in pubs is the birthright of every Indian, then why do pub-goers hide this fact from their parents and families? Is it shameful to drink? Is it wrong to drink? Then why do pub-goers never tell their parents the truth – “I’m off to the pub to drink. See you after midnight”. Hypocrites !

    Response: Out of cultural respect. 🙂 Just like they dont say that they are off to f someone.

    13> How many of us hypocrites who would be proud of our mother, if our mother wore miniskirts/tight-jeans and went to pubs? Common, be honest – just visualize your mother wearing miniskirts and guzzling frothy mugs of beer. The reason why our generation turned out good was because our mothers (and fathers) were stellar role-models for us.

    Actually if all our moms wore minis, then minis would cease to be vulgar. And by the way :), in that decadent culture, they would probably be laughing stocks beside the hot young bodies. Pubs are more my friend’s sister and her hot friend rather than mom type places.

    14> As a parent I wonder, can pub-goers be good role-models for their children? In particular, would a pub-going girl be a good role-model for her unborn children? Yes, nobody likes to think of getting married or having kids, but just wait – “(Sh)it happens”.

    – I am trying to imagine the future of pub-going youngsters – post marriage. I don’t think it’s easy for anyone to stop drinking – first socially, then habitually. A drinker as a father is bad enough for the family. But a drinking mom? Can you imagine what that would do to the Indian families?

    – I am proud that the Indian family system is a success primarily because of Indian women and our sacrifices and the values we impart to our children.

    Response- It is not any Indian thing. Irresponsible people make bad parents in general. Many people are not fit to be good parents. The problem arises when they don’t see it and start having babies. But I agree with you in a way! Reckless moms bring up reckless children. But a drink-sometime mom need not be always reckless. A meth mom may be what you describe.

    15> I feel sorry for the increasing-decadent, broken social system in the West (that we are trying to copy mindlessly) with one-third of all pregnancies being of teenaged, unmarried girls – where the boys/men are highly irresponsible and like to sow their oats and impregnate women without taking any responsibility for raising the children born out-of-wedlock.

    Response- You forgot the sluts who forgot to keep their legs together :), or dont use birth control, or are deluded religious people who think that fornication is ok but abortion is bad. Many women also deliberately get pregnant. But why are you bothered? Instead advocate for laws that create disincentives for having children that you cant support. Welfare only acts as a comfort zone for such reckless promiscuous behavior. Note the irony- the country with the highest teen pregnancy has the highest welfare.

    16> And thanks to such selfish/irresponsible men, many women in the west are just reduced to being “merchandise” who have to give out free “samples” to attract potential mates. Should our Indian society disintegrate in such a way?

    Response: Now we are talking competition. The reason why the Western woman has to give a sample is because there is much competition. So what you just said was, that you would hate to see women in those pubs give free samples as that increases the competition for the homely girl? :))Now here is the thing that you dont get- majority dont think about “effects on society” when they indulge in those acts. The girl who gives the sample may not have the brains of the homely girl who is studying for the medical exams. Think of it! Who gives samples? Salespeople. To strive for brand loyalty. Think from a guy’s POV. If someone gives me a free sample and I dont become loyal to that brand, am I selfish? Do you accept free samples?

    Think about dowry. I think its perfectly ok for a guy to ask for it. If you dont like it, move on. The society which bans women from giving samples IMO is as bad as a society which puts you in jail for asking for dowry.

    17> Going to Pubs lead to Women’s Empowerment ? Since when? I hope someone can enlighten me. Because I must have missed out on all those Women’s Empowerment seminars in my college.

    It definitely is and at the same time is not. But alcohol definitely helps to undress her. So this women’s empowerment shout may be with quite vested interests. 🙂

    18> I can see why the media is ticked off. These shallow journalists often appear to be in the same demographic as these pub-goers in Mangalore. No wonder, the media has jumped with a vengeance and focused the spotlight on a trivial, yes trivial, incident like Mangalore.

    Dunno about the hype but the strong focus is definitely warranted.
    It is the kind of an incident that befits a retrograde Pakistan, not a progressive India.

  14. Ah Smitha, with a ‘h’ and all that would-you-do-that-to-your-mom BS. For the record, how would it even matter what I thought even if she thought of doing something like that? Heard about free will?

    For all we know, you might as well bring up the same angle in a discussion on porking.

  15. The Indian Express article says it all, the kind of people these people are and their mentality. Welcome to Yeduraj.

    “Garv se kaho hum fundie hain”.

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  17. I fear the worst is yet to come… next week its Valentine’s Day and SRS will not be alone…the wierdos will pur out of the woodowork (infact they would have started already). I believe some stern warnings have already been issued by SRS…

  18. As an Indian woman, I am shocked to read Smitha’s comments.
    My parents [both] are pub-goers and my mother can give any other person a run for their money on the dance-floor. This makes me proud. I also do not think that I am a depraved wanton after growing up with it. Much to the contrary, as I have grown up to seeing alcohol imbibed, I know how to deal with it responsibly.

    As for the super-patriarchal thoughts on Indian women being the pure and sacred carriers of Indian culture, Smitha is just saying what the SRS are saying and doing albeit in a slightly refined fashion. Stop archetyping Indian women into the ‘pure mother’ and role. The same goes for morally rich India versus decadent West argument.

    Oh yes, and lastly, I do feel empowered when I have a drink at Janta Beer Bar, as one of two or three lone women there amongst 30 odd men! It’s about claiming certain taboo spaces and habits for women as well.

  19. “Manoj-Kumarish idea of the West and the purity of the East, allow me to stay silent.”

    Heh, this is the best reply ever.

  20. @ Smitha
    One more time I hear a woman say “My glorious East” I am gonna puke my breakfast out. Let’s just say that I would be ashamed if my daughter ends up married to your child. Because unlike my adorable, beer sharing mom-in-law, you will make a terrible terrible one.

    @ Greatbong
    A regular reader here. Keep the great work going!!!

  21. @smitha : Its highly imperative that people know their boundaries of comfort zones… Be it u n ur opinions or SRS or anybody else.. If one wants to step into unknown waters recklessly then one better be open to things there.. then its completely subjective whether one wants to embrace/accept it or just stride away for it aint one’s cup of tea..

    IMO – The whole idea of moral policing is B***S***.. Other than ur parents(who implicitly can have a say in ur matters of life.. n yeah just a say/opinion n that’s it.. its upto u alone to decide what u wanna do about it) and some special people, no one else gets to do any moral policing..

    I myself have amazing friends among the fairer sex who love to go pub-hopping and occasionally binge as well.. and they do know their limits and every one of them are gonna make great moms n wives n friends.. n some already are.. and this also holds good with one previous generation as well like Suren has so eloquently put..

    Ur whole idea of Indian families and culture going for a toss is just another B***S*** again.. Am sure all those girls who go binging now n know their limits will make great moms as well n will still manage to impart all the values to their children that stands out as our INDIAN-ness, just like the our parents who might not have been so outgoing imparted on us.. but it will happen on a whole different level of nakedness..

    We will prevail and so will our INDIAN-ness…

    P.S: First pls get ur patriotic values in order.. Not all share ur thoughts about that..

    @Clueless : Great reply.. All the hope is not lost.. 🙂

    @GB : Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious… esp the “Ringa Ringa roses” metaphor.. 😀
    As always an awesome post GB..

  22. Horrible and a shocker that this is happening in Mangalore – a place supposed to be the most cosmopolitan of Karnataka cities, even before Bangalore happened, and a centuries old trait it was mainly known for! I, having lived in the city, saw it as mix of cultures and very tolerant. Alas, not anymore!

    Women back at home making chapathis by 7 PM!! OMG! Women from Mangalore are known for anything but that – they were always known to be quite debonair – Aishwarya Rai, Deepika Padukone, Amrita Rao, Isha Koppikar, Sheetal Mallar, Sneha Ullal,Freida Pinto, Genelia Dsouza -the list is endless!

  23. This incident is being blown out of proportion coz the media has tasted blood previously in such incidents? Did the SRS folks do the wrong thing? Of course yes, they have no business enforcing morality.

    But think about this for a second. Is there anything called public decency? Is there anyone who can and will remain oblivious to things that go around him? Let us take an extreme example. Let us say you have gone shopping at CP or Brigade Road and this guy is moving around nude through shopping complex. Maybe, not wearing anything is the latest fad in South Mumbai! I believe most people will feel uncomfortable, maybe even offended. Will those who would protest such a behavior be Talibans too?

    You or I may have different levels of moralities. But I do want to point out to all the elitists hanging out here that there are people in India who feel uncomfortable looking at couples kissing in public. Maybe they are Talibans in your opinion, but you guys need to come out of your high horses and be realistic about what this country is. You freedom need not come at the price of my peace. And trust me, there maybe others whose freedom may come at the cost of your peace. I think you would not want to see a strip club open next to your residence. There ought to be a boundary somewhere.

  24. @Ankan – Sure some “elitists” like to parade naked in CP or Brigade Road. In fact it happens all the time. And sure, non-elitist like you are bound to be “”uncomfortable” and lose your “peace”. So let’s beat up all these elitist and put some clothes of them eh?

    There ought to be a boundary somewhere and there sure is a place for some public decency standards absurdly indecent behavior (say people running around naked in CP or Brigade Road as an example) but not at the expense of individual freedom. Once you start imposing fine-grained restrictions on how people are supposed to behave you open a huge can of worms. Who’s to decide what these restrictions should be? Who’d administering them? Where’s the money going to come from to administer these restrictions? How are we going to prevent abuse?

  25. @ everyone

    You guys are Phunny yaar. Kya ek bees saal ki ladki ne kuchh keh diya to peeche hi padh gaye sab! Once you read that “I am proud that the Indian family system is a success primarily because of Indian women and our sacrifices and the values we impart to our children” you must all refrain from further rebuttals and remain silent like GB

    @ Smitha
    Don’t worry dear. Your SRS application form will reach you soon. Jai Kaikeyi!

  26. @smitha and Ankan- Leaving aside the debate on ‘Indian Culture’ for a moment, what do you guys have to say about thrashing defenseless individuals simply because their opinions do not conform to yours. If these SRS goons had a problem with the pub-goers shouldn’t they have reported the matter to the police or filed a case? How dare they try to force their opinion on others who couldn’t hit back? Doesn’t the Taliban have a copyright on this methodology?
    @other-educated-Indians(including me) – If we keep ourselves out of the governance of the country we really shouldn’t sit and crib about the state of affairs. If we feel so strongly, we need to be part of the political process. If its dirty we need to clean it.

  27. Very well written, GB.

    Being an Bangalorean myself for the past 6 years, the Mangalore incident and the subsequent statements made by the Karnataka CM, Pramod Muthalik and some other leaders have actually made me start feeling a bit insecure and uneasy in this state which used to be one of the safest in India.

    In a Democratic society like ours, as long as we are not doing any harm to others, it’s within our rights to do whatever we want to.

    The morons who commit such heinous acts in the name of ‘moral policing’ should be punished severely. The fact of the matter is, there is a particular set of people who support such acts like the ones happened in Mangalore.

    Some politicians supporting this kind of ‘moral policing’ can’t just digest the fact that today’s youth is exposed to a much more affluent and luxurious lifestyle than they could have imagined in their youths. It’s just sheer jealousy, nothing else.

    Also, there are some people in this country who don’t have access to pubs, good restaurants, grand lifestyle, and most importantly “company of female friends” … even though they fantasize, desire and dream about having these.
    But because of their lowliness and lack of character, they don’t get these. Hence, they hurt those who have the privilege of these.

    It boils down to the story of the HAVEs and HAVE-NOTs again. The HAVE-NOTs are always jealous of the HAVEs and they always try to hurt/abuse them.

    All this talk about “Indian Culture” is total rubbish.

    Raping foreign tourists and killing them is Indian Culture.
    Burning Christian Missionaries alive along with their families and children is Indian Culture.
    Burning churches is Indian Culture. Banning women from entering certain temples is Indian Culture.
    But having a nice evening out with friends in a pub is AGAINST Indian Culture.
    People who endorse such views and acts should be shot/ hanged publicly.
    That’s MY view.

  28. Every time I think about what happened in Mangalore, what I see on TV EVERY time I put on the news, I’m scared.
    There’s an idea which all of us middle-class educated people have about our life and our country, which is – that I can live this. I can work here, stay here, get married and raise children here.
    I really don’t feel that anymore.
    I have worked hard to earn what I have. I have paid 33% of my salary to pay for police, for infrastructure, for roads, for a nation. I expect it’s a trade-off; I work, and give you some of what I earn so you work and make this a livable place for me.
    But that’s not happening. Anyone can decide that something displeases them, they can react to it exactly in the fashion they feel like.
    In that situation, why should I not hire private security with automatic weapons to protect my family? Why should anyone decide that he wants to molest my daughter, because she did something he doesn’t like? This gives him the right to beat her up? Aren’t we talking about anarchy here?
    And if I do that, why should I pay tax? Why should I live in India at all?
    I really, really hope someone can give me an answer I can believe in.

  29. Hi all, I would just like to add that right now, SRS has problem with ‘Women who visit pubs’, tomorrow, they might have problem with something else. It can even be a simple act of buying vegetables from a push cart outside the house or waiting at a bus stop! I have not seen the videos on Youtube, but have seen the photos of the 3 leaders of SRS. Unfortunately, some people are ‘cursed’ with looks that is a sort of giveaway of their inner self/intentions. Kindly do not read this good looking-bad looking thing. It’s more often the upbringing and the culture withing that reflects. If we do not protest now, we will be revisiting ‘..then they came for me’.
    BTW, my Mom always sarees, even puts the pallu over her head at times, observes fasts and is one of the first people who slogs at our Ashram during the feasts etc. During the social gatherings, she also enjoys her Bloody Marys. If SRS ever attack her and her kinds will they ever get to know that. Will they ever know that she can recite sholkas better than them? Will they ever know that she is a devout follower, my personal model for ‘Bhakti’. Couple of days back, my father was telling me how she visits her friend everyday at the Cancer clinic to give her a bath and feed her. He told me proudly ” It’s not that she is trying to make a point, she does it because, she is like this only. Has always been so.”

  30. @ The SRS sympathisers
    Have you realised that, right now, anyone can touch you, hit you, molest you, thrown acid at, beat up and then blame it on your behavior, character, religion, friendships, relations.. it can be somebody who would have otherwise never got this ‘opportunity’ to give shape to their crooked desires. It can be somebody who you might not even know existed.

    @ All
    Earlier, calling oneself Hindu was being identified with certain political affiliations, then being identified as ‘right wing’. Now, after Mangalore, Hindu is not Hindu enough. I am wondering as to what is finally their definition of the identity/religion. And if school drop-outs and rowdys define my religion, why am I silent?

    I have read about non.criminal offenders being given community service in the west. Like Naomi Campbell was given the responsibilty of cleaning public toilets , which she did … in stiletoes. It is the anger, the venom that has to be cleansed, media hype and jailing will only stregthen them. I hope that SRS members be given community service work at places of worship belonging to various religions. It is also be educational for them to attend the ashram life under the tutelage of a guru (not a new age baba) among the ‘maths’ where they can rethink their ideals. Or atleast, the illegimacy of their violent ways.

  31. @Suren

    Want to stand up and applause for you! I hope the others (the likes of Mrs. Smitha) get the point as well.

    @Smitha

    A few decades ago, and probably still in some places in India, working women, or girls studying together with boys, were considered characterless- for much the same reasons that you mention…

    I really hope for you and your family, that you are able to understand and think rationally…

  32. Dear Ms. SmitHa:

    I really appreciate your opinion.

    Infact, I would like to go a step further and say that SRS guys fell short of their ultimate goal.

    They should have immediately separated non-hindus from the clubs and punished them severly .

    They should have taken a leaf from almighty narendra bhai’s book and devised latest newtonian law to kill off few hundred muslims and consolidated their hold over the region firmly.

    Oh! Well…. golden oppertunity missed by these stupid SRS low level workers who could not differentiate between hindus and non-hindus.

    Hey, don’t lose hearts. Like they say, if you don’t succeed, try and try again.

  33. SMITHAji …. reading your articulate post, I was thinking of suggesting some careers for you –

    1. Script writer for Manoj Kumar desh bhakti phillums.
    2. Script writer for Ekta Kapoor serials.
    3. Advisor for Ram Sena —- “if they had brought along some of their sisters and mothers to slap the girls… ” . Oh yes now that its women beating up women it suddenly doesn’t seem that wrong.

    Also, my guess is you’ve never worn a mini-skirt in your life… and you despise girls who do. You’ve never been to a pub/club , you’ve never had alcohol … blah..blah…

  34. Lovely post..!!! I must say all the sides of the coin have been portrayed well.

    @ Smitha
    One of your comments talks about mindlessly copying the west. I just want to ask one thing, in the era of globalization, should our culture and tradition move forward and be flexible or be rigid?

    Use of the word Taliban, has been in this very sense. The people who are called the talibanis, have a very rigid ideology and they do not believe in change.
    The moral police, I must point, has a problem with everything that a normal person wants to do.
    And, we as the common people should realize that, all they, i.e the moral police are- are politicians, who want to always be in the limelight. A common man should stand up, this stupidity and slap these people, who have no moral values themselves. (The day, moral values are instilled in politician, India will become the Golden Bird… and Rule the world like USA)

    I stay in the Rape Capital, tell me how justified was the action of the 11 boys who just because felt that a girl and a guy sitting in a car was bad, raped the girl? Where was the drinking, obscene dressing… or the likes involved… we have such double standards, that we want MNC’s and want to be the part of the great globalization revolution, but can’t accept the women at power with men, for anything…!!!
    Ms. Smitha, I am a law student, and all of us have the freedom to speak our minds. That is a fundamental right that we have. And, no one, has a right to take that away from us. If you don’t like something, you are welcome not to do it, but you have no right to tell the other person, what he/she can or can’t do. (Esp, if that is permitted by law.)

  35. @ Inavda Bhatt

    Hon!! Wait to see what those few hundred Muslims will do.
    Visit Srinagar in Kashmir for Valentine’s day.

    You might find solace and cupid in the arms of SRS thereafter 🙂

  36. iscrew the whole cultural policing issue, the fact that someone can carry out a ‘sting’ like this is enough proof that these days in our country there is no concept of personal safety ( was there ever ). I just read this article about a six year old being trashed by an inspector / SP somewhere in UP for allegedly stealing 280 rupees, he picked her up by the hair apparently. If the cops can do this, who’s to stop the 40 year old 5th class drop out or Salman Khan even.

  37. @Smitha,

    After Clueless’s replies to your comment, I don’t think there is anything else left to be said to you in this regard.

    Get a life, babes and don’t strain you nerves by feeling jealous of the privileged ones. They have earned the privileges and they deserve them.

    With due respect to your views and your writing skills, Smitha, #~!* YOU !!!

  38. @GauravMathur
    Despite your condescending tone, I do want to engage your for a moment. First of all, I have never believed and will never believe that individuals or groups have any right to go around thrashing people to impose their moral values. I said so in my last comment, so if you are making that point to me you are arguing with no one.

    If you believe that ‘there ought to be some boundary’, we are on the same page. Well, sort of. It is nice to know that you think that people running around naked in CP would be ‘absurdly indecent behavior’! I would assume that you would expect people to have the tolerance to try to understand your feeling about such absurdly indecent behavior. It would also be interesting to find out if you will have the tolerance to try to understand why some people would feel that making out in the public is an example of absurdly indecent behavior.

    Coming to your final point regarding who decides and who implements. All I can say is: good question! But I am happy to know that some of the elitists out there who have been ridiculing the moral judgements of ‘People Like Them’ have their own moral judgements and presumably would want them enforced. Somehow..right?

  39. Our stand has been vindicated, at least three CMs have endorsed our stand against the “pub culture” (though the exact definition of “pub culture” is a bit nebulous for us right now, but thats a small issue).

    Even here we have cultured ladies like Smitha supporting our stand. What a fine lady. Anyhow a woman’s job is to give birth to healthy (preferably male) kids and imbibe the ethos of Hindu culture in them, so that they grow up and join us (and our sister organizations) in our quest to establish ram rajya. A woman has no business working or going to pubs.

    Next we are going after Valentine’s Day which obviously damages our culture, in fact we have determined that the flower rose is against Hindu culture, there is no written record of this flower in our vedas, and obviously this was brought here by barbaric westerners.

    PS: @Ankan you are precisely the kind of recruits we are looking for, we have answers to all your existential queries like “What is the boundary” “Who will implement it” etc etc, together we fight these elitists!!!!

  40. In defense of Smitha,

    It is rather interesting that Smitha’s comment raised such a response, so rapidly. I guess she became an unfortunate scapegoat on whom a lot of us (myself including) gave vent to our feelings, angered as we were after the Mangalore pub incident. I don’t agree with a lot of things that she said, but I do believe that she had some moot points:

    Most of us are against the maligning of the “Pub culture”, but think about a future where college students have easier access to alcohol- definitely there would be an increase in the number of alcoholics and related problems (we can’t expect EVERYONE to be able to control). Would we want the state to take some steps, or would we still expect the family and the individual to be responsible? What about drugs? If we are responsible enough about alcohol, why not about drugs- not all of them are harmful if taken in moderation…

    How much of “westernization” are we ready to accept? Where should we draw a line? Who should draw the line- the state or the family (DEFINITELY not SRS!) Are we okay with drunk (married:)) couples making out outside a bar which comes up across our home? Nothing illegal about it!

  41. @ “SRS guy”
    I thought Hindu ethos provide the most libertarian approach to life. Hinduism even allows room for as materialistic a system as Charvaka.

    Dont Hindus have a whole season dedicated to expression of love. Isnt Vasant Kaal all about romatic cohorting.

    What is one Valentine’s day, compared to that?

    But then again, how many of our Pub goers will care to celebrate Vasant Utsav?

    It only sounds cool when its called Valentine’s day.

  42. @Ankan – Re: “It would also be interesting to find out if you will have the tolerance to try to understand why some people would feel that making out in the public is an example of absurdly indecent behavior”

    Yes, I absolutely do have the tolerance to understand that there are a swathes of people who would be offended by a couple kissing in public. All people have the right to be offended by anything that offends them 🙂 But then getting offended is just that. It does not give license to any person to pass judgment on what they judge to be indecent acts by their fists. And that’s the thing that I take an exception to. People are free to argue and debate against what they deem indecent behavior in other venues where people with differing opinions can engage them. People can express their opinion and have a civic discourse in print, on blogs, on radio etc.

    Re: “But I am happy to know that some of the elitists out there who have been ridiculing the moral judgements of ‘People Like Them’ have their own moral judgements and presumably would want them enforced. Somehow..right?”

    I concede that point. The main thing to sort our here is what exactly are the fundamentals of a society. I believe that fundamentals our society are law and order, democracy and freedom of expression. When you stop a person from kissing in public you are essentially restricting his/her freedom to do so. You can object to it and gather enough public support to maybe get laws passed governing civic behavior, but you cannot or should not be allowed to physically stop someone from acting whatever way they choose to act in public.

  43. Hi Manu,

    Remember those days when there was prohibition in Andhra Pradesh? People just drove to the neighboring states and got drunk. And black market flourished.

    The world is full of right and wrong influences. We cannot shield our youth from everything because eventually, they will have to face the world. Instead, we should focus on getting them proper education and family support so that they can choose from what influences them.

    If we have responsible citizens and a law enforcing department that actually does its job, then we should not have to worry about how much alcohol is available.

    Westernization has usually been confused with modernization. Even the west had a regressive stance towards many things in the past, which they changed and that is what has enabled them to move forward. I am not saying it is a culture without its pitfalls. But in today’s era where we are privileged to know and observe different cultures, we should be taking the opportunity to imbibe the best of everything instead of burying our head in the sand.

    PS: I have always been against pubs in residential areas simply because the operational hours and the music would be disturbing to the residents who want a good night’s sleep. That issue should be taken up with Urban planning and zoning authorities instead of banning pubs.

  44. In the past, a widow not jumping into hubby’s funeral pyre was a danger to our “culture”, a girl going to school and getting educated was considered against “our culture and traditions”.

    I hope these people can stop guarding other people’s morals…why don’t they just check their own…as to the new “guardian” of our culture, the gentleman who didn’t even finish 5th standard….why doesn’t he concentrate on finishing school, maybe he can get a decent job instead of making a career out of slapping women (and men) who go to pubs.

    So Ms. Smitha, what makes you think that women who wear jeans don’t make good mothers? A few decades ago, women wore only nine yard saris in your state….and the six yard sari was considered a radical new fashon…did wearing a six yard sari make your mom or grandma a depraved woman with no culture? Or, maybe you walk around in a nine yard sari, singlehandedly upholding our traditions, being a role model to the kids?
    And your esteemed husband (oh sorry, your God, let us stick to our culture here) Mr.Smitha, whoever he may be, walks around in a dhoti, is it? Or is he in trousers and shirt, “mindlessly aping” western ways.

  45. I’m starting a Pub Sene…we can go around hitting people who don’t go to pubs…all those interested can contact.

    Pub Sene Office
    Talli Galli
    Mangolure

  46. @GB: Stupendously in-you-face sarcasm.
    @Suren: Inspiring indeed. I hated drinking till final year of my college. Being from a community that despises people who drink, I followed suit. And then, met some people who I admired for their qualities but who loved drinking as well. Thats when the de-linking of drink-hatred started. Though I haven’t seen a story like yours, I can very well imagine it. Thanks for that.

  47. While I condemn the Mangalore incident in the strongest possible way, I think Smitha and Ankan had some points. Hats off to Manu for his courage to accept that even after he commented against Smitha. I will refrain from saying further because this commentspace has become a mudslinging and name-calling fest with the majority deliberately avoiding the points which are difficult to answer and going with the herd. Just consider this: ten people (or 100) saying here that their moms drink and they drink and they are a happy family and successful blah blah does not matter at all. For every ten commenting here, there are a thousand out there who lost their way with easy access to alcohol and ended up ruining their lives and others’.

    Point 1: I am not speaking for or against the “pub culture”. I am only saying that the treatment that Smitha and Ankan’s thoughtful comments received was unfair, considering the standards of those commenters themselves. If you want to contradict logic, come up with counterlogic. Not examples.

    Point 2: I know I will be labelled as a secret agent of SRS and respectfully told to $#@! off as nobody will bother to understand what I wrote. I don’t care!

  48. @mrs.smitha

    first of all…the Valkes and Mutaliks of S.R.Sene should mind their own business. Imposing a dress-code or pub-code is not going to go down well in contemporary, educated circles.

    should I impose a “wig” on the bald Mutalik, just because I don’t like to see his exposed, naked head. 🙂 These jobless people will pay dearly, for trying to “police” pubs and thrashing youngsters. For such vigilantism, they are going to be in jail for a looooong time.

    i could be wrong, but I feel that we have bigger things to worry about and graver threats to deal with, than worry about girls drinking and dancing in pubs. on a lighter note, maybe, having a wet T-shirt contest to help raise funds for Indian victims of Jihad attacks, may help Indians turn a new leaf in fundraising. Ask the S.R.Sene if they could organise one such event… j/k

    pub-hopping is an individual choice. I am guessing you were raised in a family that despised alcohol, and that’s understandable. I know some of my co-workers (all from Southern India, incidentally) who are like you – allergic to pubs and alcohol. These ppl avoid alcohol like the plague !!! That’s your (and my co-workers’) choice and I respect that. But my co-workers respect my choice and don’t lecture me on the “sins” of pub-hopping, mind you… nor do I force them to join me when I go pub-hopping. Our Hindu culture is all about live and let live. Let’s not forget that !

    like I mentioned before …there are more serious problems plaguing the nation today – including illiteracy, Jihadi terrorism and Bangladeshi infiltration that should be the focus of such vigilante groups, not moral policing. Is this how the S.R.Sene would like to be remembered in history – as negative villains, as stupid jokers? Or do they want to do some constructive, pro-India work?

    finally… why the heck does S.R.Sene group besmirch “Ram” by indulging in such thoughtless goonda-gardi in his Name? Lord Ram did not go around asking for pubs (taverns) to be shut down or women to wear purdahs in his lifetime.

  49. Anirban, when you say that thousands of families have been ruined by alcohol, please consider for a minute the hundreds of thousands of families that have been spoiled by deep fried potatoes.

    Yes, potatoes. They are evil vegetables that cause high cholesterol and BP. And in the worst situations lead to heart attacks. Many a families have lost their loving members because of consuming potatoes. The rest suffer because they have to take expensive medication that eats into the family budget. A couple of families may say that they consume potatoes responsibly, but clearly that is not the case with majority.

    So, from henceforth, I call for a ban on buying and selling of potatoes in the open market. All farmers should stop growing potatoes. Anyone caught with potatoes in any form will be…err…beaten up?

  50. @Smitha: i guess you might be related to the SRS founder hence the words of support i guess!
    Also say tomorrow i make another Kishan Sena and i go and beat up all girls and boys who are attending a bhajan ceremony as i believe religion is all a load of crap! i guess then i am entitled to my action going by your logic!

    The day i need SRS to keep my kids under control, i would rather commit suicide. it just shows my failure as a parent!

  51. Anirban,
    In some ways you are right. A logic, no matter how illogical it might seem to one, should be answered with counter logic, not with examples. You hit the nail on the head on that one. I was a bit amused myself with the examples of who drinks and who doesn’t. That’s not the issue here.
    On the other hand, Smitha’s comments and some of the counter comments from others which led the topic towards East/West ‘culture’ divide and who has been affected negatively by drinking and who hasn’t seem to be so (forgive me, y’all) stupid that a little bit of mudslinging was bound to happen, no? After all, mudslinging originates from stupidity.
    To me, SRS’s actions were nothing short of terrorism. So what they did not strap bombs to their chests? They terrorized a bunch of innocent people minding their own business. As far as I understand, terrorism is “an act which is intended to create fear perpetrated for an ideological goal”. Period. That’s what the SRS goons were doing.
    Where are all these talks about ‘culture’ and (in your words) ‘Smitha and Ankan had some points’ coming from? They didn’t have any points. Neither do you when you say thousands have lost their lives to alcohol. That is none of your or my business. But terrorism is.

  52. If SRS guys really want to implement their dress code, why don’t they go really far to Ram’s time when ladies did not wear anything above waist?
    THAT would be interesting .
    What say smitHa ben?

  53. “For every ten commenting here, there are a thousand out there who lost their way with easy access to alcohol and ended up ruining their lives and others’.”

    This figure was collected via a scientific survey and can’t be disputed. The problem of alcoholism started due to the “pub culture” (especially pubs where women frequent) there is no recorded data of anyone not going to a pub becoming a alcoholic. Also we are not deflecting the topic of straight forward goondaism to alcohol addiction and women clothing. Thanks you.

  54. Spark,

    Let me supplement your logic with another example and see if it makes sense.

    There is no recorded data of anyone NOT going to school who did not fail exams. So obviously, going to school makes you fail exams because people who don’t never fail exams.

    Hence, schooling is bad.

    For the thousands of alcoholics, alcoholism is just a symptom of a much deeper problem. Take the alcohol away and the symptom will manifest in other ways. They are usually the kind of people who do not assume any kind of responsibility, who always blame others for their issues and “drown” in alcohol hoping for some sympathy. They are not this way because they are alcoholics, they are alcoholics because of their personalities.

    And how long can we regulate someone’s life like a kindergarden kid? What next? You will be shoving veggies down their throat or prevent people from eating out because it is unhealthy?

  55. “With due respect to your views and your writing skills, Smitha, #~!* YOU !!!”

    Its people like who need moral policing, not the rest of us! Comments like above speaks for itself and goes a long way in exposing ones charecter- if you dont appreciate anothers perspective, argue against it but with some semblance of decorum, not resort to unrestarined comments to substantiate yours!

  56. What shocked me a lot about Smitha’s comment was her comment that moms wearing jeans, skirts and those who drink are something that people are or should be ashamed of! I am a mom of two young women and they are proud of me because I wear western clothes (including skirts) and yeah, drink beer and wine too! My husband never drinks unless he offers me one and same goes for my dad and my uncles. All my aunts have a drink once in a while and I can tell you that they are great moms, have wonderful relationships with their kids and their kids are proud of them. As for those kids who are ashamed of their moms expressing themselves, shame on those kids and teenagers.

  57. And alcoholism was rampant in India much before the pub “culture” arrived. Just as smoking was rampant here (bidis and chewing tobacco) before packed cigarettes arrived. The problem that people have with pub “culture” is that people are doing it openly, almost like a celebration. They don’t go to shady liquor dens and drink themselves to death…they don’t chew tobacco till they get mouth cancer. They work the whole day, go to a pub, have a drink, at times have one too many, but next day they are back at work. They party, they enjoy. They drink. The Taliban hates that.They hate enjoyment. According to them some things must be underground and shady for them to be legit. Like holding hands and kissing. I actually feel sorry for people who think like this.

  58. @Ankan-

    “If you believe that ‘there ought to be some boundary’, we are on the same page. Well, sort of. It is nice to know that you think that people running around naked in CP would be ‘absurdly indecent behavior’! I would assume that you would expect people to have the tolerance to try to understand your feeling about such absurdly indecent behavior. It would also be interesting to find out if you will have the tolerance to try to understand why some people would feel that making out in the public is an example of absurdly indecent behavior.”

    I see where you are coming from. And by the way, both you Smitha are perfectly entitled to your views. You have a right to find something indecent. But I think that you and Smitha are failing to see the distinction between dislike and Talibanism. As an example, there are many classy pubs and clubs in US where a woman inappropriately dressed will be asked to leave. Then there are meat-market type ones, the ones inside which anything goes. So you can decide where you want to go depending on your tastes. Another example….in US there are no marijuana bars like Amsterdam…so by a stretch of logic…US is a bit like Mangalore when it comes to drugs and prostitution. To give you another example, when I was in Miami last summer, I saw a few college kids having a blast and getting really hot on the beach. But to my surprise, I saw the beach patrol come in and asking them to behave. So there are “drawn lines of decorum” almost everywhere. Eventually all these norms come down to the existing cultures. In western culture, a simple kiss may not mean anything at all. It happens so casually between almost strangers, while saying goodbye and between friends of opposite sexes in social settings that its quite harmless really. So nobody here gives a rat’s ass to a couple kissing on the streets. But given the state of sexual repression in India, a kiss inevitably has some sexual connotation and hence you have all these problems. But that very culture is not stagnant. The things you are calling as Western influence are actually natural consequences of more affluent and evolving nation. If a drunk girl comes and pukes on you, give a tight slap to her by all means as she has crossed your boundaries. But what is the problem if shes minding her own business?

    Coming to your point of running around naked, I think that there can be an easy solution. Say if a shopping mall allows naked shoppers, then if you hate that, you simply avoid that mall. Go to some place where they will kick out naked people. Simple.!Everyone has their own disgusts. Say I would not like to have a woman sitting beside me on a plane and openly breastfeeding her baby. So if I am flying an airline which prohibits that thing, then I would alert the crew if she does it. I am sure that she too would do the same if I started masturbating while watching porn beside her. But it doesn’t and shouldn’t bother me if shes doing it in someplace where its OK to do that. Just like it shouldn’t bother her the fact that I have access to porn somewhere else. Similarly people like and you and Smitha should not be bothered about whats going on inside someone else’s pub.

    The key difference therefore is between asking someone to leave and that of beating them up and threatening them to change their lifestyles. And especially in this case, the bar was someone else’s property. So they didn’t have any right to behave like that. The sad fact is that these guys made a fool of themselves by this sordid act. I believe that legalizing prostitution would lead to a happier Mangalore and go a long way towards preventing this kind of an incident.

  59. @Smitha : “Some of us don’t have the guts to call the murderous Mumbai attackers with the same appellation. So, let’s just vent our frustration on the little guys that won’t come after you or slit our throats.”

    No one is born a Talliban, it’s some of these so-called little guys when not stopped goes out of their mind and become a Talliban.

    “If drinking in pubs is the birthright of every Indian, then why do pub-goers hide this fact from their parents and families? Is it shameful to drink? Is it wrong to drink? Then why do pub-goers never tell their parents the truth – “I’m off to the pub to drink. See you after midnight”. Hypocrites !”

    Having sex is a very common human activity, do we go around beating drums about it? We don’t, neither do you I hope. So are you a hypocrite too?

    “How many of us hypocrites who would be proud of our mother, if our mother wore miniskirts/tight-jeans and went to pubs? Common, be honest – just visualize your mother wearing miniskirts and guzzling frothy mugs of beer. The reason why our generation turned out good was because our mothers (and fathers) were stellar role-models for us.”

    There was a time in “cultural” India when women were never used to wear anything above their waist. Did they never bore a cultured progeny?

    “As a parent I wonder, can pub-goers be good role-models for their children? In particular, would a pub-going girl be a good role-model for her unborn children? Yes, nobody likes to think of getting married or having kids, but just wait – “(Sh)it happens”.”

    My Grand Ma taught me to drink! My Mom, my Aunts too visit pubs quite regularly. I am a successful, cultured human being. And I am proud of them. What do you have to say about it?

    “I am trying to imagine the future of pub-going youngsters – post marriage. I don’t think it’s easy for anyone to stop drinking – first socially, then habitually. A drinker as a father is bad enough for the family. But a drinking mom? Can you imagine what that would do to the Indian families?”

    Don’t let your imaginations fly high. Be practical.

    “I am proud that the Indian family system is a success primarily because of Indian women and our sacrifices and the values we impart to our children.”

    Indian women were forced by the male-dominated society to be that way just like once they were forced to be a sati.

    “I feel sorry for the increasing-decadent, broken social system in the West (that we are trying to copy mindlessly) with one-third of all pregnancies being of teenaged, unmarried girls – where the boys/men are highly irresponsible and like to sow their oats and impregnate women without taking any responsibility for raising the children born out-of-wedlock.”

    We are NOT trying to COPY the West. And how much do you know about the West? I still know lots of people from West who have more cultural values than you or me.

    “And thanks to such selfish/irresponsible men, many women in the west are just reduced to being “merchandise” who have to give out free “samples” to attract potential mates. Should our Indian society disintegrate in such a way?”

    Selfishness and irresponsibility is not a predominant feature of Western culture. Smitha, are you listening? Smitha? Oh Lord, you have gone to live under the rock once again!

  60. Clicked submit on the prev comment by mistake…

    I am surpised why a whole bunch of people have chosen to target smitha’s comments…..sure not all of her points are correct and people are free to criticize them, but why resort to personalized retorts, as seems to be the case with a few of the comments.

    One commenter says “Beware GB, your blog is about to be morally policed”. Obviously the guy has absolutely no idea of what moral policing means. I am sure GB himself would welcome opposing viewpoints on his posts. Why people would think having an alternate viewpoint amounts to moral policing is beyond me!

    On the topic itself, I have nothing to say which hasn’t been said. The problem in our country has more to do with an utter lack of respect for individual rights, mob culture in our polity and a basic disregard for the rule of law, and a weak and insensible political class incapapable and unlwilling to enforce a rule of law.

    While there is no denying that these SRS idiots must be put permanently behind bars, giving excessive importance to a lunatic fringe group and its leader, as the media seems to be doing is equally avoidable.

  61. Forget about it!

    Think about this. Bangalore is the only ‘metro’ in
    India where pubs are closed at the ‘appropriate’ time
    of 11. When we are talking about freedom of women to
    have a good time at pubs in Mangalore, why not talk
    about this?

    Why do you think the ‘5th standard drop out’ can go
    ahead and do all this with immunity? Why do you think
    the government created the great 11 PM deadline?
    Simple. Because one remark against the ‘Hindu’ SRS (or
    any of its many equally hideous right-wing sister
    concerns) by ANY political party in the country, and
    immediately the party becomes ‘anti-Hindu, anti-Indian
    Culture’! Would we take this ridiculous drivel if it is
    dished out as us? No, obviously not. But carefully
    stage-managed, dharnas and rath-yaatras will sure
    affect the only person who ALL these political parties
    care about: The voter!

    And we are not that person. The average pub-goer
    doesn’t even figure in the Government’s list of
    ‘citizens’! How many of us do vote? But then, should we
    vote, and choose the lesser of the demons?

    Naaah, I suggest we do things which we do best. As Ms.
    Renukaji has recommended (probably at the risk of her
    entire political career, or an ulterior motive! :)),
    PUB BHARO. Take all your friends. Stop shelterning
    yourselves in those house parties (with reduced volumes
    from those 2 – speaker systems!). Continue partying way
    past 11 right outside the pubs. I do not need to tell
    you how you can do that!! The strength is in numbers!

    They CANNOT arrest 300 people who decide to open up
    beer cans, laze on their car hoods and decide to have a
    nice time, responsibly! If you are the risk averse
    types, atleast give your friends company, but stand
    your ground!

    Protests happen in different ways. Let this be a way to
    show that there is enough ‘pubbing’ junta in Bangalore
    and they need a place they can call their own. To quote
    one of my favourite movie lines: “People should not be
    afraid of their governments. Governments should be
    afraid of their people.” And PLEASE don’t make this a
    weak attempt without the support of numbers, like the
    one which those poor rock band guys did against the
    banning of live music in pubs!

    Otherwise, Forget about it!

  62. I support display of affection in public or women going to pub. But i think easy access to alchohol/tobacco etc. is not good for society. Nearby my house dozens of school students flock at pan shop for cigaratte smoking.

  63. Excellent article…awesome writing…I look forward to see more examples of such writing in the indian media,whose articles are simply depressing…this article is a work of art 🙂

  64. So much angst against Smitha! While (IMO) Smitha’s view on the current state of youth culture is a tad sensational, I couldn’t help but laugh at the whole “my ma and pa went to pubs and I turned out ok” comments. What it just displays is opposing perspectives formed by your own view of how life treated you. There are extremely conservative families that have had train-wreck children and the ultra-mod families that have had shining beacons of society and obviously vice-versa. Ultimately, what it proves is there is no one way to raise children or even conduct your own life. So the vitriol directed towards each other is surprising. But what is universally accepted is that random blokes anointing themselves as moral police and smacking girls around for enjoying a drink is a no-no. And I guess thats where the Taliban reference (rightly) comes in. And that is why the whole Valentine Day charade by the Ram Sena of forcibly marrying couples should also be well…morally policed. Referring to this link

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Ram_Sene_to_marry_off_dating_couples/articleshow/4078475.cms

  65. It is important to understand why Pramod Mutalik ji and his Shri Ram Sena activists are is pushing forward with their activism-

    1. He understands that a sizeable number of middle class/upper middle class people between the age of 40 to 60 who have children in the age group of 16 to 24 support their activism, atleast overtly.

    2. The class divide that this kind fo activism generates may helps Pramodji gain supporters and workers amongst the Hindu have-nots, who until now have been brutally utilized and recklessy manipulated by caste-based politicians and money spinning proselytizers, both Christian and Islamic.

    It has to be remembered that it is the economically underpreviledged Hindu, that has still got the spine to actively take on the Islamic juggernaut. Educated, upper middle class Hindus are the first to run away as refugees or emigrants at the slightest threat perception.

    3. The audience that is being targetted does not vote and even when it votes is significantly the “JNU type”. I personally dont agree with this part though.

    4. Mutalikji and other hardline fringe Hindutva groups get significant media coverage (bad is still good). For years people like Mutalikji have been crying haorse about the concerted efforts by mosques and Islamic seminaries to teach impressionable Muslim youth to consider coverting a Hindu girl to Islam as ticket to Jannat.

    By resorting to these antics and getting media coverage, Mutalikji thinks that someone out there will take a closer look at the bigger picture.

    Paranoid maybe, but we cannot forget that it people like Mutalikji that desparate Hindu parents approach when their daughters have been sold to a prostitution ring in Azamgarh.

    Overall this is not as crazy as it seems to hot bardancers like me and many of my supportive customers here.

  66. @ Smitha

    I fully appreciate your point of view, but sensing the general outlook of most of the visitors on this blog, I prefer to reserve my comments. Hence, I can only accord my tacit approval to most of your comments. However, I would rather like you stop being an advocate of the SRS. The moral policing act of SRS is akin to committing a greater wrong to undo a wrong (wrong –as perceived by the SRS and not by the elitist).

    @ dEbOLiN, Feb 4th at 9.27 am

    “All this talk about ‘Indian Culture’ is total rubbish. … … … But having a nice evening out with friends in a pub is AGAINST Indian Culture. People who endorse such views and acts should be shot / hanged publicly. That’s MY view.”
    – Now, I see who is the TALIBAN.

    @ to All (in general)

    They say India is a young nation (with an overwhelming majority of people falling in the age bracket of less than 35). Since I do not fall in this category, it is quite natural that I do not share the same wavelengths as you, at least on this topic. I would like to emphasise here that I do not grudge the success of you all young upwardly mobile people. Instead I rejoice because of your attitude India has forsaken its third world identity. But spare a thought for us also. We may be dead rubber wood, but do we not have feelings. How are we supposed to behave when put in an uncomfortable position caused by someone’s expression of freedom.

    Case in point – My sister has taken a flat in Gurgaon. The floor just above her is shared by 3 young women. They toil through the entire week as a result no interaction takes place with these immediate neighbours. But with the advent of weekend, everything changes. Each of these young girls comes with her respective boyfriend. They drink a lot, play loud music and generally make merry for these 2 days. Now, if they do everything behind the curtains, there would be no issue. But these young people do not get the fun unless they show off, which is obscene to say the least. My brother-in-law who works in an American MNC comes back exhausted from the office very late in Friday night eagerly looking forward to enjoy two days of bliss. Instead every weekend he ends up quarrelling with the young group – it may be due to parking of cars, noisy or indecent behaviour. The young girls do not give a damn to the appeals from the society. They know that as long as they throw a fat wad of notes before the landlord, they would not be disturbed.

    Normally we tend to overlook small bits of transgression, unless we are cornered. I think I would not be offended if I come across a couple canoodling in the open while I am all alone. However, the same incident would put me into an uncomfortable situation if I am with my 13 year-old son.

    My parting submission: Enjoy as much as you can, but do everything in moderation, without encroaching upon other’s space. Some things are not meant to be done in the open, otherwise how is it different than the person defecating or urinating in the open.

  67. tapaswini, if you don’t like something, look away. Sheesh, how hard must it be for you people to carry on with your daily activities without this much amount of common sense?

  68. Aha! The previous message got posted before I could start.
    @Tapaswini

    So… would you say that a large sample of urban population above the age group of forty, is a little miffed with the sudden growth of the so called “pub culture”?

  69. @ anomit

    We can do without your advice or sympathy. As a matter of fact we do try to ignore such quirky behaviour. For example, my sister’s family avoids staying at home on weekends. But let’s keep that aside, since it’s an individual’s problem and each individual would deal with it in a manner he/she is more comfortable in dealing at. The discussion board should be more concerned with the social aspects of the individualistic behaviour, i.e., the behaviour which absolutely disregards the norms of the society.

    The Mangalore incident is not a singular one. It has happened many times in the past also. In fact this is very common in U.P., Haryana and other parts of North India. One may recall how Swami Agnivesh leads a battalion of women, who are armed with brooms and sticks, to attack desi liquor vends. We may not approve of such violent assaults. But instead of condemning them outright, one needs to ascertain the reasons for their grievance. Mostly they are disgruntled and a misled lot who can be persuaded to contribute in a more positive manner.

    One of the reasons for the great social divide may be that the native culture is being gradually overpowered by a new culture which could be best described as ‘Metro Culture’. In its struggle to survive, the native culture revolts. This is still evident in Mumbai, which is the oldest metro of this country. How can we expect places like Mangalore, Hyderabad or Jaipur to be any different, which until very recent times were only mofussil towns. Even the GreatBong had obliquely hinted at this social phenomenon in a very recent post about the flight of the Bong beauties, when he lamented upon the loss of present day Bengali man to be poetically original as he uses stereotype phrases like ‘Babes’ while referring to women instead of the more colourful ‘Lolona’ or ‘Lotika’.

    Alas! All this gives a very sad commentary on the rapid disintegration of our social fabric.

  70. Change when it begins is always described as “deviant” or “counter culture” or “heretical” whatever….. Of course a lot of them falls by the wayside or stay on the sidelines but a lot DO go through.
    Long time back, till about 1920, they used to cane female suffragettes in UK and US…. with “concerned aam junta” fire-and-brimstone haranguing by conservatives. Women included. There used to be patrols of “decent” women looking out for women unaccompanied by male family or sunbathing (PS: veer seen an early 20th century “swimsuit”?). Back then also we had Smitha Bhabhis and Pramoorkh Moot-a-licks and the usual “understand their concern” types. A lot of trees were cut down for the pulp to print their arguments too.

    And look what happened finally. 😀

    For good or bad, norms change, dress codes change, Gods change and Women’s role/power change. Freedom in choosing partners, lifestyle is the next thing in line…. now that they’re out of the kitchen and have got right to work and drive and talk to males who ain’t family. If old farts or leering park-bench uncles or “defenders of age-old culture” got a problem with that they can stand in a corner and suck a lemon. Sooner or later your daughters/grand-daughters gonna introduce their live-in boy friends and invite you for a round of champagne.

    Hey, if it can happen in America with it’s Puritanism, why can’t it happen to India of Vasantholsavs and Polyandry and Navratri and all?
    So relax! Have a Charminar!

  71. @ Tapaswini: As someone who falls into the same age bracket as you, I have a different perspective.

    I sympathize greatly with your sister’s predicament, and the two incidents are similar, in terms of context. However, the similarity ends there. They are polar opposites in terms of who is victim and who is the aggressor. Your sister and husband have their right to a peaceful life in a private space violated. Period. In exactly the same way the Mangalore girls’ (and the Kerala MLA’s daughter’s) right to a peaceful life in their own private spaces were violated by Hindutva goondas. Only in the girls’ case, it has been violated with so much violence that they will probably carry the scars for the rest of their lives.

    The main problem with Smitha’s comment (as with yours) is that both, either by accident or design, ignore the fact that Pramod Muthalik is a criminal with 41 cases against him, with most of the offences being of a communally violent nature. His associates in crime include dacoits and known charge-sheeters. In this context, Pravin Valke being a 40 yr old 5th standard dropout is central to the debate. Mentioning this is not patronizing in the least, but absolutely crucial in understanding how extreme political movements (either on the right or the left) subvert and co-opt those with limited opportunities and low self-esteem into their divisive, violent agendas. The violence ensures that such movements also attract criminals.

    Religion, being simple and easy to understand, has been used here as a tool to mobilize unemployed and underprivileged youth and turn them against imaginary enemies. Look at Cathy Curvacious’ blog for a chilling example. Less people had a problem when Muthalik and their ilk were unleashing their violence on poor Muslims and Christians in the region. But violence, like tobacco, sex, alcohol, drugs, coca-cola, fried potatoes and ice-cream is rewarding to those who use it. More so when you are poor, disempowered and have little self-esteem. It must have been a heady, powerful, hitherto un-experienced feeling for these ‘lads’ when they attacked a poor Muslim and heard him/her pleading for mercy (Rich Muslims are probably more insulated, for now). And it is human nature to want more of that feeling. But there are only so many poor ‘religious enemies’ you can attack before you cast your eyes wide at other ‘transgressors’, who make you feel less ‘male’, ‘powerful’, ‘pure’ etc. In this case, women. For an example right here, look at Judy Judicous’ comments which move so easily from hate mongering (casually alleging that Muslims are sex-traffickers: a contemptible, dangerous and hateful lie) to trying to find out if Tapswini represents a sizeable vote-bank that can be exploited by dividing society further .

    Both of you also gloss over the fact that the girls were groped and molested, by the same criminals who claimed (without a trace of irony) that they were assaulting them to protect their ‘virtue’. That too despite Arnab pointing readers to the video.

    By turning the pub incident (and as others have done elsewhere, the abduction and assault of the Kerala MLA’s daughter and her male Muslim friend) into a superficial debate about ‘metro/pub culture’ and ‘role models’, people like you and Smitha are diverting attention from the real, dangerous issues of calculated intolerance and bigotry which are actually causing rapes, disability, destitution and death amongst the poorest of the poor. If you are doing this out of ignorance, let me paraphrase Martin Niemoller’s poem.

    “In India, they came first for the Muslims, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Muslim;
    And then they came for the Christians, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Christian;
    And then they came for the young women, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a young woman;
    And then . . . they came for me . . . and by that time there was no one left to speak up.”

    And Suren, thank you for a wonderful comment. And GreatBong for a wonderful post.

  72. tapaswani, just assume for a moment that I don’t give a damn about culture or tradition or whatever phrases those of you on high horses keep throwing on us. As long as I don’t get in your way or you in mine, I fail to see why either of us should be offended.

    For the record, I don’t want to have anything to do with any fabric, anything from the past that doesn’t catch my fancy. Does that take away my right to live my life on my own terms?

    Nikhila, there was a blog post on the lines of what you said by Neil Gaiman ( http://is.gd/9Mpc )

    An excerpt from the post:


    “if you don’t stand up for the stuff you don’t like, when they come for the stuff you do like, you’ve already lost.”

  73. DYFI claims responsibilty for ‘abducting’ MLA’s daughter

    The assault on the daughter of an MLA and her friend at Mangalore has taken a new turn with the Democratic Youth Federation of India claiming responsibility behind the incident.

    The DYFI is the students wing of the Communist Party of India-Marxist. The daughter of CPM MLA, Kunhambu and her friend were assaulted and abducted by a group of men on Friday, while they were travelling in a bus at Mangalore.

    The DYFI while claiming responsibility for the attack also said that they were only trying to protect the modesty of the girl.

    The Mangalore police who have arrested five persons, four from Kasargod and one from Mangalore however refused to confirm the identity of the accused.

    When the incident occured on Friday, the MLA blamed the Shriram Sena. However the founder of the Sena Pramod Muthalik denied any role in the incident.

    The accused who are in custody claimed that they were from the DYFI and also maintain that they did nothing wrong. We were only trying to ensure the safety of the girl, they also added during their interrogation.

    The lawyer defending the accused, P P Hegde told rediff.com that his clients wanted to ensure the safety of the girl and also added that they angered to see their MLAs daughter going out with a boy.

    The victim however maintained that the boy was known to her and added that he did not try and misbehave with her. I just asked him where he was going she said. We were not sitting in the same seat either, she said. Detailing the one hour in captivity she said that they were warned and also added that the men threatened the boy several times.

    Chief Minister of Karnataka, B S Yeddyurappa [Images] has termed this incident as a conspiracy hatched by the Congress and the Janata Dal-Secular to tarnish the image of his government. I have also asked the police to take strict action, he also added. He has also chaired an all party meet to discuss the growing incidents of violence.

    Mangalore Superintendent of Police, Satish Kumar told media-persons that action is being taken and also added that five members are in custody. Kumar also said that the driver and conductor of the bus too were in custody.

    For more details on the “secular” hoodlums who are moral-policing India, read the article and comments at:

    http://satyameva-jayate.org/2009/02/08/beyond-funny/

  74. @anomit:
    For the record, I don’t want to have anything to do with any fabric, anything from the past that doesn’t catch my fancy. Does that take away my right to live my life on my own terms?

    “if you don’t stand up for the stuff you don’t like, when they come for the stuff you do like, you’ve already lost.”

    Ha ha. “Don’t like” and “Doesn’t catch my fancy”, aren’t these different ways of saying the same thing? So you are advocating that others stand up for things they don’t like, while you refuse to do so.

    @all: I have been following the comments and let me make it clear for one last time: I do not condone what the SRS did. Not for a moment. It was utterly, completely, unjustifiably wrong.

    I only said, and I say it again: just as you have the right to decide what catches your fancy and what doesn’t, learn to give others that right too. I would love to watch porn in my office but the moral policing by my company prevents me. Why? If my colleagues do not like it they can just turn away, right? And if it comes to polling, I’m sure the majority will vote in favor of porn.

    I took exception with the “logic” of the drinking-supporters and I still do. I took exception with the way Smitha was personally attacked here although I disagree with much of her writing. If you are reading this blog and commenting, you are already somewhat successful in life with English knowledge and an access to a computer with Internet. What percentage of Indians do you represent? Very small! Then how can you give examples of your parents and uncles and expect that proves your point?

    The blog post was excellently written, and I do not suppose for a moment that the girls were not molested. Who lets go of a chance to grope a girl in utter chaos in the dark? At least not people who are led by a 5th standard dropout. My only point is, people who take the opposite extreme view (I am not naming anyone… the comment thread will reveal all) and utter 4-letter words for anyone who dares to speak something different are also extremists and are little better than the Taliban themselves.

  75. Anirban, care to explain how not liking something is akin to trashing that idea? I don’t like going to traditional wedding ceremonies because I find them an utter waste of time and energy. That’s my view. But then, I would also be against the idea of imposing draconian laws like the number of guests that can be invited, justified by some screwed up logic as we have been seeing these days. If that’s the way a certain section of the society wants to enjoy themselves in the privacy of their residences, it’s their call and they are absolutely free to do so.

    Really bad attempt at twisting my words back on me. Better luck next time.

    Also, seeing how anal you are regarding the use of the f bomb, isn’t it still clear to you that common people have lost their patience? Clearly their articulateness and intelligence have been drowned in the rhetorical din of narrow minded men and women who can’t just mind their own business. There is no scope for a logical argument where the other party is as unwilling as an untamed beast and determined to carry on with its ideology come what may. Sometimes slapping back is better for your health.

  76. @ Nikhila

    “In India, they came first for..”
    What you wrote, the word “they” applies best to the Muslims….if you would care to look deeper into it.

    But anywhoo..it is a old old qoute that everyone seems to be using…on all sides of divide, everywhere.

  77. @all,

    It is pretty obvious that what the SRS did and the manner in which they did it is completely unacceptable…everyone out here agrees with that(including Smitha and Tapaswini)…please do not misconstruct anyone who so much as gives a different point of view as someone who is their symathiser or supporter or whatever…
    Also, giving examples to counter some argument, or bringing in another argument and drawing parallels etc is completely useless…as anirban rightly pointed out, counter logic with counter-logic…for every 100 who did turn out right in spite of alcohol, there may be 1000 who did not, then another 10000 who did…these do not prove anything…

    the real question still remains unanswered…there are situations where something may be legally acceptable but morally unacceptable to some…when encountered with such a situation what should be done?
    someone mentioned about running naked in a mall;if you find it distasteful go to another mall where such an act is prohibited. Fair enough.
    But I am walking on the road with my grandmother…see a couple making out…my grandmother finds it offensive…
    now legally speaking, they may be doing nothing wrong…also I just cannot take another road simple because none exists…what now?
    Gaurav says that people are free to argue and debate against what they deem indecent behavior in other venues where people with differing opinions can engage them…again fair enough…but what of this particular moment?Until the debate happens, this behaviour which is “morally unacceptable” to some still continues and the offended are forced to look the other way…
    One can request someone to stop…but if they dont (and legally they dont have to) you have no choice…then it doesnt matter whether you are offended or not…you just have to look the other way…is that it?
    I have personally seen so many of my friends being refused accomodation just because they are bachelors…because the society members have their own perceptions about bachelors and their lifestyle…and legally speaking there exists no such law that can refuse bachelors accomodation as far as I know…but I guess people form their own morally acceptable code and live by it…
    Read in the newspapers a couple of months ago…some village in Maharashtra had a large number of alcoholics…the wives were fed up with their husbands alcoholism so they formed a group, gathered brooms and stuff and destroyed the liquor joint in the village which they held responsible for their problems…now how many of us sympathise with them? Remember here the husband’s “freedom” to live his life according to his choice and consume liquor or whatever else he wishes to consume…
    Many are offended if a bar or a pub opens in their neighbourhood and they see couples canoodling in public…mothers find it uncomfortable to walk with their young children when such activities do take place in public (as Tapaswini mentioned)…which right holds here:the legal one or the moral one?

    I feel self policing is the key…let me again reiterate…what the SRS and other hoodlums of their kind do is completely unacceptable…but fact is if you restrain yourself, EVENTUALLY (I know this wont happen overnight but i hope that EVENTUALLY) we wont have such criminals trying to impose their views on us…
    How hard is it to just stop making out in public when grandma complains? ghar jaake karo yaar…instead of trying to reiterate that it is your freedom to do so…
    And I think we all are smart enough to understand what acts may be considered as offensive to someone and what may be not…

  78. @ Tapaswini, Smitha, Ankan

    You must have your old world ideas and stay with it,we are not asking you to change them.Its only when you come out in a public forum and preach them and say and we should keep your comfortiture in mind, we have a problem.Why should we be reminded of what we should do and what we should not? Do we insist you to join us in a pub for a drink or too? We are the modern, we know everyone has his or her own comfort zone and we dont make the effort to take you out of it.I bet you know as well as everyone does,whenever an incident like this happens,it is the fundamentalist who is trying to establish his point.He wants us to see his logic when we are not interested….he wants us to go down to the grass roots of hindutwa or islam when we are not interested !! I will give you an example…. Have you ever seen a youth atheist procession shouting for abolition of religion? Have you ever seen anyone shouting “down with god, down with god”? We are content with what we do. We dont intend to hurt your sentiments.Please dont get yourself involved and be hurt.
    And coming to culture,it changes over the course of time. There is a lot of evil in culture as well… satidaha pratha remember, used to be a part of the culture.Moreover,going to a pub having a drink (be it a man or a woman)should not be the reflector of a persons cultural inclination.Our culture is not that weak is it? That same lady in miniskirts can be in a saree in a wedding ceremony. Whether she kisses in public is her personal opinion and level of comfort.Honestly, I dont feel comfortable when I see someone kissing in public, but big deal,thats my opinion and if she feels comfortable doing it…why should i be bothered, and more importantly, why should i bother her by abusing and molesting her?
    If you are culturally inclined,be so.There is no harm in that,it is your individualistic approach and we respect that. I am afraid I cant say the same for SRS as it was more of a publicity gimmick for them than the concern for cultural disintegration,but it holds true for people like them, and people like you.
    Life might just be greener on the other side sometimes,be content and stay happy then (and shout sour grapes coz u cant join in),dont just voice your stupid fundamentalism then when a generation is not ready to listen to you. You live life your way, so shall we.

  79. Sudhinder, we weren’t even talking about PDA and making out in the public. It’s just because of a few people here that we have digressed. Let’s know your opinion about what people do in private spaces.

    Examining such kind of comments here, I find nothing in favor of their arguments other than falling back on the clichéd rhetoric of society and its norms. The same old excuse of tradition, culture and all that shit.

    Let me point out what the much vaunted Indian society and its norms stand for. Mediocrity. People are simply jealous of whatever success you might have achieved. There will always be a wholesome effort to pull you down, into the comforting cradle of mediocrity. The ‘aam aadmi’ mindset, if I may add. I’m a loser, I’ve a thousand fellow losers with me raving to assert the superiority of their values. It must be so comforting, isn’t it? Judging just about anyone’s character is so easy. If one is successful, he must have had real good luck or undertaken nefarious means. If you haven’t had the balls to talk to a beautiful girl, she must be a slut. Someone spends a fortune on something, that person must be arrogant and stupid. Look at us. Learn some lessons from our pathetic life.

    Whatever the values or culture you are fighting for, however rabid or insane you might be about protecting them, you’d do well to know the fact there won’t be even a trace of them after a few millennia. I’m not even talking about your relatively minuscule life span. So maybe you’d rather worry about making your own life meaningful than worrying about what others decide to do with their lives.

  80. What SRS has done is disgusting, and they should be thrashed for it. But, what worries me from all the comments I see above, is a tendency to support the pub culture just because you hate SRS (and other such).

    It is true that we should not stop people from doing what they want as long as it is legal, but there are some things that should be highly discouraged – like smoking and drinking.

    Most of the people who support drinking around here, have not seen a child who suffers from drinking parents and How scared they become when their father comes home drunk. Since they have never seen it or been there, they don’t understand it.

    – A child doesn’t understand alcohol, all he sees is that his father who behaves so nicely with him sometimes also behaves erratically at other times.

    – Let us be pragmatic here a bit, it is only in “greatbong movies” that you find people who are funny after getting drunk. >95% of the people show their dark side once they down a couple of pegs. And yeah, I know, alcohol did not create that dark side, but do we really want it to show? to children especially? The effects of alcohol usually range from the benign boring repetitor (like a Bachchan in “Hum”) to the dangerous and violent. In most cases it is somewhere in between, irreparably damaging the child’s psyche. It is not uncommon for fathers to should at children for trivial issues, like notebooks lying around, or pencils lost etc. once they are drunk.

    – The child feels that there is a social stigma because the neighbours eventually come to know that the father gets drunk occasionally, and whether we like it or not talk about it. And please don’t tell me that the child should not be affected by that, they are children they naturally get affected by these things (like peer pressure etc).

    I am making the above points from personal experience (my father’s occasional binge, and the plight of my nephews once my uncle gets drunk). Neither my father nor my uncle drink more than once or twice a month, but that is enough to affect the children. They are both wonderful people, and are not violent, and yet I can see the long-term effects on my nephews…. I turned out fine, but I need not have.

    Alcohol in many ways is worse than smoking. Smoking kills the person, alcohol kills the family. Drinking, drunkenness, alcohol consumption, alcohol related problems, they all have been on a steep rise ever since the pub culture has taken root. Don’t believe me, take a look at the statistics.

    I am all for free choice, but I was hoping more people would show their disapproval of the pub culture here.

  81. @ Nikhila

    Of course, you can have a different perspective. But where did you get the idea from that I am glossing over the fact of the girls being groped and molested. It seems as if I have become an approver of molestation when at the very first instance I had communicated my disapproval to Smitha about the moral policing act of SRS. To make things clear, yet again I condemn this whole incident.

    May be you have never experienced advances or groping about while using a public transport system (the buses in Delhi are notorious for that), hence you are astounded when the same act of debauchery was trans-shifted to a high-end pub. You see, there would always be some elements in the society who would try to take advantage of the situation. If given a chance, the same men who are taking a very high moralistic stand here in this very page would not flinch away from washing their hands in the flowing river (borrowing the phrase from the Hindi Muhawra – Bahati Ganga Mein Haath Dho Lete Hain).

    Setting aside the sexist agenda, I am more concerned with the social aspects of this incident. By giving a call for “Pub Bharo”, Ms Renuka Chaudhary is only furthering the social divide. Even more dangerous is the assumption that only the drinking women are the harbingers of development and conversely the abstainers are behind the times.

    @ Greatbong

    The lady holding a Gourmet Thali in the banner “Slaughthering the Senses” has a remarkable resemblance to the Hon’ble Minister. Please clarify, whether it is her or not. If the answer is in the affirmative, may be it’s time to replace the Thali with a Bear Mug or some Red Wine Glasses.


  82. They terrorized a bunch of innocent people minding their own business. As far as I understand, terrorism is “an act which is intended to create fear perpetrated for an ideological goal”. Period.

    Dude, be careful how you define things. The above definition describes parenting of toddlers exactly. I should know.

  83. @ Sree

    But then again Sree,its all about free choice.You answer yourself when you are surprised to find lesser people opposing the pub culture.Consider this as a sample population and gauge the inclination of this generation.If the Sree Ram Sena had engaged itself into a peaceful ralley dont you think their purpose would have been served? The comments that have cascaded in this blog against the SRS are more for condemning what they did and the way they did?This generation cares a damn about what a party paid religious gung ho organisation has to say on what we should do and what we should not. This is democracy man,everyone man,everyone woman can do anything under the sun as long as it is not against the law of the land.
    It is this misconception of oraganisations like SRS, Ranveer sena,Bajrang Dal etc, that they can impose their whims on our generation is what we are commenting against.
    Had this been a Blog like…” Pub Culture – good or bad?”, I am sure you would have found more people writing in against it.
    What I want to say is,if I am educated enough I already know the perils of smoke and booze,and I still want to do it, it is no-ones job telling whether i should do it or i shouldnt. And, in case of girls,if they are un-insane enough to understand the kind of place they are going to,whether they should wear skimpy outfits and dance and booze is their call totally. They dont need the SRS telling them (in Mangalore violently)what ” Indian Women” should do or should not.It is no f****-ing business of theirs.

  84. @Corporate Serf
    The definition is pretty much correct except you need ‘adults’ instead of ‘people’. Under this definition however, God can be considered to be a ‘terrorist’. But then I guess that is true 🙂

  85. @ abhinab & Sree

    What you guys are saying was very succinctly said by Madhu while commenting in ‘The Talli-Ban”. She said

    “Being from Karnataka, I do not condone the discriminating moral policing, on the other hand i would not want my son or daughter drinking,smoking,doing drugs because its not healthy and its well known that all the above things causes lapse in judgement
    Culture and morals have nothing to do with it.”

    She said morals, not moral policing. Catch the difference.

    cheers

  86. @ Laborer

    With due respects buddy I never said I would not want my son or daughter to drink or smoke and I think you have got me wrong. The basic premise of my comment was that be it unhealthy,unsafe or anything,I believe if the person is an adult and sane enough to understand what he or she is doing ( it might be someone u kno,might be ur son or mine,ur daughter or mine)and still wants to do it,it is not my business,nor urs to try and stop them. It is their call entirely,and their right.You can tell the youth what you feel is right and wrong and then you will have to let them do things their way.They know the pro’s,they know the cons,and more importantly,its their life.Why should one impose one’s idea on the other? All you can do,if you feel involved,is, suggest.

  87. Please don’t compare incomparable things. It is not “terrorism” to push a few people around (In many countries, that would not even be an offence under the law).

    It IS terrorism to kill entire populations, such as the Sunni Taliban did to the Hazaras, just because the latter were Shia Muslims. Or the way in which Kashmiri Muslims executed a genocide of the entire Kashmiri Hindu population in the 1990s … or the manner in which Bengali Muslims continue to kill, convert, rape and drive out Bengali Hindus EVERYDAY as we speak – not just in Bangladesh, but also in my home-state of West Bengal.

    In our media/left/pseudosecular rush to find SOMETHING to taint the pacifist Hindus with, they end up equating molehills to mountains.

    If pushing people around makes one a terrorist, most of us have been terrorists at some point of our life or the other!
    Terrorism is when you KILL people. Is that not clear to some of those posting here? What happened to Mumbai on 26/11 was terrorism. What a few goons did in Mangalore was NOT terrorism – as I said, many countries don’t even consider than anything other than a petty offence punishable with a fine and community work.

    I have been a pub-goer myself and I have seen quite a few brawls in my lifetime, especially in the US and Ireland. I have seen the police breakup scarier attacks by crazed soccer fans (than Mangalore)- with barstools and chairs flying around and bottles being broken on people’s skulls. If I pushed a few people inside or outside a pub around in the US, I will probably get 20 hrs community service as my penalty. If I did what Jehadis do everyday – go around massacring people, blowing up people – I will get the death sentence. DO you still not see the difference?

  88. Nasty things start out small. Things that are brushed under the carpet, which only get worse with time. These may seem trivial at the moment but haven’t we still learned any lesson from history?

    The terrorists you talk about and the ideology they profess, these elements didn’t spring out of nowhere on a fine day. It all started with resentment against foreign invading elements in certain fiercely independent tribal provinces which was also instigated and further fueled by other countries to their advantage. These people gave their cause the color of religion to make it seem righteous, to attract the disgruntled and generally wayward youth who would have anyways ended up killing each other. Anything religious has a tremendous psychological effect, good or bad. This time it was bad.

    Even if we go by the literal interpretation, threatening young people not to step out of their homes on this very day is terrorism. Molesting and groping young girls is not the same as pushing someone around my friend. It was intended to inflict mental scars so deep that young people would think twice before venturing out and enjoying life on their own terms. Forcing people to align with certain viewpoints and values which they neither like nor identify with is terrorism. If you are so naive, feed some pigeons and stay blissfully ignorant all the while telling yourself that every thing’s fine.

    You have been watching too many Rambo movies to know what terrorism means actually. Guns and swords are where it ends. But quite obviously you don’t know where it begins.

  89. @Nilanjana Dutta

    Clemenza in Mario Puzo’s The Godfather says:

    “And then if we let them push us around on the little things they wanta take over everything. You gotta stop them at the beginning. Like they shoulda stopped Hitler at Munich, they should never let him get away with that, they were just asking for big trouble when they let him get away with that.”

    Self explanatory, isn’t it??

  90. @ Nilanjona
    Jedi Master will rather cackle at a few petty hooligans, name them as “Taliban”, and hang them.

    While the real Taliban with butcher knives ready to slash throats, stand right next to him.

    Thats what he meant by the previous comment.

  91. Baatul The Great, I expect warriors like you who recognize the “real taliban” to defend us. With those 48″ benchpressed pecs.

  92. @Baatul

    I admit, I made a big mistake, I presumed that everyone visiting GB’s blog is knowledgeable enough to understand the quote from The Godfather. As I said I presumed too much.

    Let me rephrase my previous comment, especially for you, by taking example of Taliban: Taliban graduated to stoning people to death and public beheadings when they were not checked for lashing girls for attending schools/ beating everyone who wore western cloths. The thing to be noted is that Taliban started to lash girls for attending school when their attempts to impose some other comparatively “minor” changes went unchecked, so on and so forth.

    To make it even clearer I will quote the proverb – “A stitch in time saves nine”.

    Now the Ram Sena issue: If goons of Ram Sena are not punished appropriately and their acts get passive/in-principle support of a significant proportion of population (as is evident in the comment section of this blog), then not only Ram sena, but all other private armies will be emboldened. These “senas” will then graduate to more severe initiatives under the guise of “protecting our culture”. If this happens then, well who know, many evils like Sati, discrimination based on caste, discrimination based on sex, slave labor, female infanticide e.t.c did happen in India and hence can be labeled as a part of “Indian culture”.

    One last thing please don’t just post a comment because you have to, post a comment after understanding the comment that you are trying to counter.

  93. Greatbong da, we all know you are trying to make a strong statement by being silent. But please, we need you to at least put in one comment here.

  94. @Nilanjona
    ” or the manner in which Bengali Muslims continue to kill, convert, rape and drive out Bengali Hindus EVERYDAY as we speak – not just in Bangladesh, but also in my home-state of West Bengal.”
    Bangladesh…I will stay silent on…because there are too few of us hindus left there to be converted,raped or be driven out…but West Bengal….hmmmmmm….well….I stay in that state…..where did you said you stay? This sounds like Gujarat…or the 80’s….attending to too many Mamata ‘bhashan’s I suppose. Or has the BJP caught up with you again? Wake up ma’am, forget what stories of the 1900’s your grandma still tels you about communal riots which had driven them out of Pabna,Khulna,Dhaka,Chattagram,Sylhet blah blah blah. Stray incidents are there,and will be there,no-one can do anything ’bout it.But in a public forum,try not to give a fictitious impression of the state you stay in.
    PS ;- ” Terrorism is when you KILL people ” – well I thought terrorism was scaring the shit out of people by violent means… if they hit the person next to you….aint YOU scared as well without getting killed? Aint u ” terrified ” ? well Dictionary.com states the meaning as ” the use of violence and threats to intimidate or coerce, esp. for political purposes.”
    A pointer, perhaps?

  95. @Nilanjona

    I am quite sure that you can support the claims that you made with verifiable numbers. If it’s not too much trouble, please share these numbers (along with their source) with us.

  96. @ Jedi Master and Anonymous
    Reality of what is happening in Bengal (the Indian side)
    The data in the book below, is based on Government of India census reports as well as documented police reports.
    As you may know, vote bank politics leads to a lot of incidents going unreported, so the actual incidents are even more than that are reported

    http://www.bengalgenocide.com/Demography-bimal.pdf

    You have the full right to question this information, in which case I will have to get you in touch with a friend named Rishi Khujur at rishi_khujur@rediffmail.com , who can ensure your safe site visits to places in Birbhum, South 24 Parganas, and areas in Dinajpur.

    If are in Bengal, your travel costs locally will be taken care of.

  97. @ Jedi Master and Anonymous
    Reality of what is happening in Bengal (the Indian side)
    The data in the book below, is based on Government of India census reports as well as documented police reports.
    As you may know, vote bank politics leads to a lot of incidents going unreported, so the actual incidents are even more than that are reported

    bengalgenocide DOT com/Demography-bimal DOT pdf

    You have the full right to question this information, in which case I will have to get you in touch with a friend named Rishi Khujur at rishi_khujur@rediffmail.com , who can ensure your safe site visits to places in Birbhum, South 24 Parganas, and areas in Dinajpur.

    If are in Bengal, your travel costs locally will be taken care of.

  98. @anonymous
    What is happening to Hindus in Bangladesh (the already Islamized side of Bengal) is not grandma’s stories.
    Even with the new government, things will not change at the grassroots.

    [GB adds: Please understand that this forum is not the place to ask for donations. Further solicitations will not be appreciated.]

    I look forward to some generous donations from you, once you have realized the magnitude of the atrocities.

  99. @batul

    With deference to GB’s wishes that the discussion in the comment section be limited to the topic of the post, I will not respond to your previous comment.

    The issue with all the right-wingers is that whenever you approach them with some “crime” that they have committed, they always respond by citing some other “crime” committed by someone else.

    A crime cannot be justified by comparing it with some other heinous crime. Let me know if you think otherwise.

  100. @batul

    I have already said that with regard to GB’s wishes I am not inclined to discuss the topic that you are hinting on, since it is not related to the current post (after all its GB’s blog). That topic is for some other time/post.

    This post is regarding moral policing; let’s keep it to that, shall we??

  101. @ Jedi Master
    Dude!!
    Why do you keep repeating the same post. Read the last line of your second alst post. You asked for my opinion.
    I gave you a 2 line response.

    Nothing to do with anything I may or may not want to discuss.

    peace

  102. @ Smitha

    Shame on you. Please take your backward thinking elsewhere. I am a South Indian woman married to a European, I drink wine and I love cocktails, this doesnt mean i will make a bad mother/parent. Yes, I wear short skirts especially in the summer and my husband thinks I look great in them, whats wrong Smitha? jealous much?

    My south indian father gave me my first gin and tonic at the age of 14.

    My mother enjoys a glass of red wine once in awhile or a cold beer especially during the summer months in Chennai. So according to you this must have made her a bad mother?

    Yes my parents drink, as do my in laws, my mother in law sunbathes in a bikini in the summer while sipping on a gin a tonic, she has been the best mother to her children, way better than you can or will ever be.

    Its women like you, who will raise men that will want to marry virgins while they are far from it themselves.

    Please educate yourself, or better yet take a break to travel the world, read some books, learn about other cultures,and most of all please cut the holier-than-thou attitude.

  103. man wants to be woman’s first love and woman wants to be man’s last love.So its not wrong if one wants to save for the right man. Smitha was lucky to fulfil her burning desirez at an early age….but most of us have to wait till 30. Moreover i support girls marrying at age of 18-20 yrs…coz they look irresistible at that time . I like polygamy, but it should be restricted to very very few men who really love women.

  104. Drinking has been part of our culture forever and ever. If I don’t drink, I risk offending our hallowed traditions!

    Most people I know love drinking as I do. Some can’t taste even a drop. Same with non-veg and vegetarian food. Doesn’t mean I should try and turn them into drinkers and meat eaters, or they should try and convert me to their philosophy, right.

    As for the “drinking is bad” meme, it’s a total fallacy. Eating sugar is also bad. How much and how frequently is the problem – and that depends on the the individual.

    Personally I knew I’d never marry a woman who was a teetotaler or a vegetarian. And I didn’t. I guess my kid will turn out to be a serial killer or something – according to Smitha. Wish I’d known that before…

  105. @ Shan

    “Drinking has been part of our culture forever and ever. If I don’t drink, I risk offending our hallowed traditions!”.

    Actually, it has been. Hindu scriptures are rife with events and incidents involving liqour, the consequences of which hav eoften been pprtrayed as being negative.
    Many traditions and rituals also involve intoxications as part of an individual’s spiritual elevation.

    “Personally I knew I’d never marry a woman who was a teetotaler or a vegetarian. And I didn’t. I guess my kid will turn out to be a serial killer or something – according to Smitha. Wish I’d known that before…”

    I doubt if Smita went as far as you attribute her to be. There is no doubt that drunk parents do effect young minds. Nevertheless, your kid might turn out to be a serial killer even if he didnt touch booze 🙂

  106. @Smitha

    Sorry to say this but it is people like you that foster such evil/ violent thoughts on values/culture etc..

    My parents, both avid party-goers, are easily one of the best that anyone could have. A good parent is one who can balance things out and not necessarily one who believes in abstinence. My mom doesn’t drink anything other than wine (that too because its good for the heart) and is a wonderful mother. One who is open to ideas and opinions contrary to her school of thought as well. She wears westerns mainly not bceause she is ashamed to be Indian but because she is comfortable in them and can carry them of without that oh-I’m-trying-to-look-sixteen kind of an attitude.

    I have always found it appalling that many people like you think the way you do. We live in a globalized society where the key is to remain open to things. Being open doesn’t mean you conform to ideas/norms you are not comfortable with; you just don’t enforce your opinions on others. Worse even in the Mangalore case, go about barbarically beating up women. *&^*^$ those B#$@%2! Yes I can abuse, and that doesn’t make me culturally deprived. I reserve it for likes of Muthalik.

    Please for your sake and your children.. have an open mind and learn to respect individuality or else you will not be any better a mother than ‘those pub-going, mini skirted women’ you refer to with much Bharatiya nari chauvenism.

  107. Pingback: Trivialising Sexual Crimes Against Women « The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

  108. Just because Smitha takes a conservative stance, she is being verbally attacked by almost everyone here. Wow! I don’t understand why Liberals become so defensive when they encounter a conservative POV.

    You guys could have just corrected her misplaced idea about “pure and morally rich Indian woman and Indian culture”. Instead, you are taking her comments personally. For every positive responsible drinker, I can cite 10 examples where families have broken apart because of substance abuse.
    Please don’t act as if alchohol abuse is not a possibility among pub hoppers.
    After all, it takes one extra drink for even the most responsible drinker to get a DUI.

    Smitha, I think you got a bit carried away with the ‘sharaafat’ talk. Those girls have rights too. The guys have actually broken the law here.
    Also, if parents are worried about their kids’ evening life, they should have a talk with them about the ill effects of drinking, set a curfew. etc.
    Vigilante Moral policing should never be encouraged.

  109. @ Smitha
    The only mistake you made was that you equated short skirts and a certain a lifestyle alien to you as EVIL. I don’t agree with you there but I can understand your anguish about this new bar-hopping culture that is catching up like forest fire and ruining civil behaviour.

    To all the people attacking Smitha, I ask this.
    The GOOD people that you quote as examples would have been decent even if they hadn’t taken a single drink in their lives or worn short skirts? Right?

    So, lets leave dress code out of the debate.
    The poster who quotes health benefits of drinking? Wow! Seriously? Do you think that’s why all those tweens go to bars? To have a healthy heart?

    Shall I quote statistics on drunk-driving, date rapes, brawls and other issues ?
    Lets just give a second and think how police force that has to be catching terrorists (as the author so cleverly reminds us) are wasting their time trying to bring in law and order whenever the harmless party-goers go nuts?

    Do you guys seriously believe that those hooligans (taliban? Yeah right!) would have done that if the bar was legal and it was filled with
    decent peoeple like your moms and dads who know when to stop drinking, how to choose a designated driver and follow basic human ethics ( NOT to ever take advantage of a person who is under the influence of alchohol?)

    Get this straight! HONORABLE elites in the drinking club are grossly outnumbered by reckless hypocrites masquerading as progressive thinkers.

    This issue is not just “a bunch of sex-starved uneducated right wingers attacking peaceful liberal bar-hoppers” like the media portrays it. If that’s what you think it is then you guys are not the objective thinkers you claim to be.

  110. I’m sorry, I got emotional and ranted away.

    All I wanted to say was, your perceptions change when the issues affect you directly.

    Try the same liberal logic and reasoning and PC thinking about the harmless drinking culture when someone opens an ILLEGAL bar next to your house, people blocking your driveway with unplanned parking, vomiting on your lawn, shouting and screaming at 2 AM.
    and if you protest peacefully, the greedy bar-owner and his apathatic patrons use media and the support of overseas progressive thinkers like you and have the audacity to call a bunch of vagrants, TALIBAN!

    meanwhile, the government and “Superpower’ crazed city planners are so eager to make your city the silicon valley of India that they have not bothered to plan development and handle the growth.

    When the locals are stomped over like this, some people take matter into their hands and offer a horrible/messy vigilante justice. The media and people like you are happy as long as Hindus(the conservative types) have to be made fun of and painted as villians. As long as the sentiments of the minorites are preserved, we can take a piss on the rest of India right?

    Well, I am from Bangalore. The Mangaloreans I know said that there was more to the story than how it was spun by the media. I am definitely not condoning whatever happened to the customers. Violence is not the answer. Close-mindedness is never right whether it is practised by a conservatiseor a liberal.

    btw there are many legal bars in Bangalore and Mangalore. Surprizingly, the ” hindu taliban” never attacks businesses that follow rules and regulations. I wonder why?

    Anyway, I have read a few articles (mostly cricket ones). You keep ranting about Bengal being treated as a soft target byDelhi and Mumbai. If you were not a Bengali you would see how biased your views on Karnataka are.

    I apologize for not being clear headed while posting.

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