Two Indian girls beaten up for visiting zoo with Muslim friends

Two college girls in India were allegedly beaten up by a group of men, belonging to a Hindu right-wing organisation, for being with Muslim boys at a zoo on Tuesday.

The Indian police arrested three suspects named Sampath Shetty, Varada and Dinesh for the assault, which was captured on a mobile camera by an onlooker. The video of the alleged assault went viral and triggered outrage against the apparent moral policing, Hindustan Times reported as saying.

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Home minister of Karnataka, Ramalinga Reddy said police had taken prompt action. He said there was a substantial reduction in vigilantism in the Kannada district.

“I have directed police to take strict action against the vigilante groups. Action will be taken against policemen in case of dereliction of duty,” Reddy told reporters.

Deputy commissioner of police (law and order), said the three persons arrested were members of Hindu Jagarana Vedike. “Others might have been involved.” He said it was not yet known how the activists got information about the youngsters meeting in the zoo.

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Police said the girls, a Hindu and a Christian, had gone with their Muslim friends to the zoo to celebrate a birthday when they were assaulted around noon.

Mangaluru is no stranger to incidents of moral policing. In 2009, Sri Rama Sene, a right-wing group activists attacked women visiting a pub.

In 2012, Hindu Jagarana Vedike activists attacked 12 people celebrating at a resort in the city.

This article originally appeared on Hindustan Times

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