A Hindu organization called the Hindu Utsav Samiti is urging the Indian government to use its national biometric ID program to ensure that only Hindus are allowed into traditional religious dance ceremonies called ‘garbas’.
Speaking to the Indian Express, the president of the 6,000-member HUS, Kailash Begwani, claimed that Muslim men infiltrate the events to “entice” Hindu girls, and argued that the Aadhaar ID cards offer a reliable means of discrimination at entry to the dances. “It’s not easy to make a fake Aadhaar card, unlike other documents like voter identity cards,” he said.
The HUS’s call is a provocative one as the country’s Supreme Court considers whether Aadhaar violates the fundamental privacy rights of Indian citizens, and presents government leaders with the option of appeasing a loud political base – Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Ram Nath Kovind are widely considered Hindu nationalists – or starting to delineate limits to how Aadhaar can be applied in Indian society.
HUS does not organize the garba events, and made its petition to the district administration, which has not yet offered any indication of accommodating the demand.
August 18, 2017 – by Alex Perala