Dr Mumtaz Ali Khan, Minister for Haj and Wakf, the lone minority member of the BJP government in Karnataka, wants a ban on the Sri Rama Sene for “inhuman” attack on women at a pub in Mangalore.
His stand is converse to that of Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa and other members of the Cabinet. And this comes on the day when a Mangalore court granted bail to Pramod Muthalik, the founder-leader of the Sene, and 27 others in the case.
“I don’t believe in any Sene—this Sri Rama Sene or Dalit Sene of Ram Vilas Paswan, nobody should take law into their hands. Such brutalism is not right and men in Mangalore cannot beat up girls. This is outright inhuman... The government must hold an inquiry and ban this organisation (Sri Rama Sene).”
Speaking on pub culture, he said: “Where’s the need for pubs? Why should girls spend time in pubs? They should not bring discredit to our society. We are basically Indians and our culture is so refined and wholesome....”
However, his demand for a ban on Sene was dismissed as “individual opinion” by Home Minister V.S. Acharya. He said though women who were thrashed at the pub did not step out to give evidence against the men, police officers arrested 27 men and took steps to ensure that such assaults are not repeated. “Those girls are not coming out to give evidence but they are talking to the media.”
Endorsing the CM’s stand against pub culture, he said: “Many parents agree with us. They are concerned about youngsters going astray because they frequent these places (pubs).”
In Mangalore, Muthalik said his organisation’s agitation against pub culture was a success because at least three chief ministers have spoken up against such culture.
He said earlier in the day, he told the Mumbai ATS that he had no knowledge of Praveen Muthalik (mentioned in the Malegaon case). “I have told them that he is not a member of our Sene and that I am not involved in that case.”