Moral Police


Mumbai is the entertainment capital of India (apart from being the financial and commercial capital of India). Bollywood is synonymous with the Indian form of entertainment around the world.

Most of the movie stars live in Bandra, a Western suburb of the city.

In this context, it was funny to see the news item today in The Times of India “Cops slammed over ‘kiss-and-hug’ fine” .

Where are we headed in India ?

If this can happen in Mumbai to a young man who just hugged his friend before seeing her off in an auto-rickshaw, one can imagine what could happen to even holding of hands, or looking at each other, in other parts of the country.

There are many instances of the moral police acting in a high-handed manner around the country, especially in the State of Karnataka. But, in Mumbai ? I could not believe this is happening here of all places.

It is better to avoid looking at even one’s own wife or girlfriend and be very stern-looking when one ventures out. For heaven’s sake, don’t even touch anyone. Who knows, the moral police may just be around the corner of the road, and you do not wish to take any risks. They can easily charge you under some vague Indian law or section of some old British Act and cite you for “indecent behaviour in a public place”. Not everyone is a lawyer to contest the actions of the police.

The young man in the news story was fined INR 1,200 (some USD 25) for this offence of “hug-and-kiss”, and he was required to appear in the Court soon. That is the plight for causing a moral hazard in this morally uptight nation.

Visitors also beware of the moral police !

Cheers,

Vijay Srinivasan
25th February 2012
Mumbai

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