When some UP-based Hindu groups formed ‘anti-Romeo Squads’ to counter ‘Love Jihad’ carried out by radicalized Muslim youth to trap gullible Hindu girls in romance to convert them to Islam, Left-liberals and media had made a big issue out of it. Organised conversion of girls after trapping them in romantic relations triggers social schism and vitiate communal atmosphere in the society.
On somewhat similar lines, the Kerala Catholic Youth Movement (KCYM) is planning to set up ‘Special Youth Squads’ to keep a watch on the jihadi conversion mafia who target Christian girls. According to KCYM leader Visakh Thomas, his organisation will form squads to protect girls in his community from the menace of Love Jihad. It will spread awareness among community members about the threat posed by jihadis and provide help to those who are trapped in ‘Love Jihad’ relations.
The mounting ‘Love Jihad’ cases targeting Christian girls has triggered panic among the members of the minority community, which was clear from the statement issued by the National Commission for Minorities Vice-Chairman George Kurian. “Christians have become a soft target for fraudulent conversion,” he stated.
Commenting on the alarming trend, Catholic Congress vice-president Dr Chacko Kalamparambil said religious conversions through force and fraud is terrorism. He also alleged that the Christian community is a major victim of this and urged the Kerala government to invoke provisions of IPC that deal with forced conversion and take stern action against culprits. Kalamparambil said that it should not be projected as a ‘Christian versus Muslim issue’ and the Islamic organisations must come forward to disown and condemn such incidents.
Meanwhile, members of various Christian organisations took out a massive demonstration in front of Kozhikode Collectorate, on September 27, to protest against the rising ‘Love Jihad’ cases targeting the community.
Protesters alleged that the state government had turned “a blind eye to the plight of the Christian community”. The media is also scared to highlight the issue out of fear of the organized jihadi conversion mafia.
According to the Church authorities, there was a rise in the number of ‘Love Jihad’ cases in the Kozhikode district. The immediate provocation for the protest was a shocking incident in which a radicalized Muslim youth raped a Christian girl after drugging her and filmed the act to force her to convert to Islam. When she refused, the youth threatened to make the videos public. Later, the youth along with his friends tried to abduct the girl. Notwithstanding the complaint from the victim and her parents, the police tried to save the culprit.
Following news reports about the incident, several such incidents came to the fore. The parents of a Delhi-based girl complained to the National Minority Commission that their daughter was abducted by a Muslim youth after trapping her in ‘Love Jihad’.
In a letter to Home Minister Amit Shah earlier this week, Kurian demanded an investigation by the National Investigation Agency and an effective law to “curb such fraudulent activities of radicalised elements”.
In a video message posted on Facebook, a senior cleric had termed the organised act of conversion by means of love, rape, drug and coercion as “Rape Jihad”.
Expressing solidarity with the victims of Love Jihad, the demonstrators gagged themselves with black ribbons and protested against the alleged police laxity in the probe into the incident.