New Delhi: Former AAP leader Prashant Bhushan on Sunday fell afoul of the Hindutva squad thanks to his tweet commenting about Uttar Pradesh chief minister Adityanath’s new ‘anti-Romeo squads’.
The ‘anti-Romeo squads’ are supposed to crack down on ‘eve teasing.’ And ‘eve teasing’ is the benign term used in India for sexual harassment.
Bhushan, who’s also a public interest lawyer and founder of Swaraj Abhiyan, said there are gods in Hindu myths that are looked upon indulgently despite their being ‘eve teasers’.
That did not at all go down well with many people on Twitter, including at least one BJP Delhi spokesman called Tajinder Bagga who said Bhushan’s comment “insulted” a deity.
Bhushan then tweeted again, attempting to use logic to try and show why he wasn’t being insulting and on the contrary was saying anti-Romeo squads amount to criminalising the behaviour of gods.
As the controversy snowballed, Bhushan then tried to use lawyerly language to make his point even more clear.
During his campaign, Adityanath not only promised to set up anti-Romeo squads. He also said if “anyone is found teasing girls, they would be hanged publicly”.
A mere two days after being sworn in, Adityanath made good on his promise. He intends these ‘anti-Romeo’ squads to be present in public spaces and educational institutes to prevent ‘eve-teasing’ and ensuring women’s safety.
On day one after the announcement, 22 such squads, including policewomen, fanned out in Noida, on the outskirts of Delhi. They have continued to patrol since, but there have been allegations of moral policing and unwanted harassment of men by these squads.