New Delhi, Feb. 13: Brinda Karat today stood up in Parliament for young people wanting to express love on Valentines Day and asked the government to ban the Sri Ram Sena that has threatened to disrupt the celebrations.
Terming the moral police the twin Taliban, she linked them to Right-wing Hindutva forces.
With home minister P. Chidambaram present in the House, she urged the government to protect young people who want to celebrate Valentines Day an occasion the CPM has in the past frowned upon as western consumerism.
Karat said the Senas threat could have been ignored had it not been preceded by the most wild attacks by the outfit on women in a Mangalore pub.
This is done with the connivance of the government in power in the state, Karat alleged. Karnataka has a BJP government.
Karat also spoke up for the right to drink, traditionally seen as a vice by the CPM.
They are adult women and if they choose to go to pubs and drink, there should be no problem, there is no prohibition in Karnataka, she said.
The CPM leader said women were being singled out for attack particularly when they were accompanying Muslim men. She brought up the case of a schoolgirl who committed suicide after suspected Sangh parivar activists humiliated her because she was with a Muslim man, Saleem. While the girl is dead, the young man has been arrested for rape, Karat said.
Chidambaram has already asked the Karnataka government to take preventive and punitive action to ensure no organisation can act as moral police.
In Delhi, police are on alert and commissioner Y.S. Dadwal has instructed his men to protect couples celebrating Valentines Day.