Eight women injured in the attack
Victims treated at
MANGALORE: Alleged Hindutva vigilantes struck again in Mangalore on Saturday. A 40-member team, allegedly belonging to Sri Ram Sene, attacked a pub on Balmatta Road and injured at least two women, who have been hospitalised. According to sources, some of the vigilantes had been booked in an earlier case of molesting women.Violation of traditional Indian norms is said to be the cause for the attack. Sri Ram Sene and the Bajarang Dal have separately claimed the responsibility for the attack, even as Superintendent of Police N. Sateesh Kumar said the culprits were being rounded up. Bajarang Dal activists had on December 28 attacked a bus in which students from a tutorial institute were on a study-tour to Mysore. The attackers had claimed that girls and boys from different religions were travelling together in the bus and hence were attacked. Members of the pub staff, who did not want to be identified, said that at about 4 p.m. two people approached the front desk and requested permission to enter the premises. “They said they wanted to see what was going on inside,” said an employee. Soon, nearly 40 people barged into the pub and targeted a group of five women, who had placed a lunch order. Subsequently, another group attacked three other women in the pub, the staff said.
According to one staff member, some of the assailants molested the women customers. Some of the staff members and the men, who were accompanying the women, were assaulted when they came to the rescue of the women. They were treated at a hospital. A case has been registered under IPC sections 354 (outraging the modesty of women), 326 (causing grievous hurt), 441 (criminal trespass) and 506 (threat to life).
Claiming responsibility for the attack, State deputy convenor of the sene Prasad Attavar told The Hindu that it was a “spontaneous reaction against women who flouted traditional Indian norms of decency”. He said these women were Hindus who “dared to get close to Muslim men.”
Kumar Malemar, district convenor of the sene challenged the Bajarang Dal’s claim and insisted that the attack was carried out by his outfit.
Meanwhile, the management of the pub was tight-lipped over the incident and one of the partners said, “We are a fledgling enterprise. We do not want to get into trouble.”
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