Surat: Right-wing activists are spraying cow urine on people coming to attend garba dances in Gandhinagar, the capital of Gujarat, in order to keep Muslims out of the festivities, A news paper reported today.
Not surprisingly, it is the Hindus who are recoiling at this unpleasant shower during the Navratris which anyway have been marred by unseasonal rains during the first half of what is dubbed as the longest dance festival in the world.
Devduttsinh Raol, an IT professional based in Gandhinagar, has lodged a complaint with the police to put an end to the irksome practice which is putting off garba revellers who are thronging venues dressed up in all their finery. Raol had gone to Thanganat ground in Sector-11 on Wednesday with his wife and brother-in-law to partake in Navratri festivities. He was taken aback when he found a group of youth wearing saffron scarves sprinkling cow urine on all visitors at the main gate and also applying 'tilak' on their foreheads. Raol said he does not need a certificate of being a Hindu from any organisation.
"The group also misbehaved with my wife when I tried to intervene", he said in his written complaint. When police expressed reluctance to take his complaint, he approached Gandhinagar superintendent of police Virendra Singh Yadav who took cognisance. "All garba organisers have been asked to arrange for private security. We have assured them of quick police intervention if we are alerted on time," said Yadav.
However, the police appears reluctant to act against the miscreants who have been making brazen statements and can be easily identified from photographs published in local newspapers.
While police has been asked to increase vigil around 'garba' venues during evening hours, this hasn't deterred the emboldened saffron outfits which have announced their next programme at a dance organised by the Gandhinagar Cultural Forum, the biggest Navratri event in the city, on Friday evening.