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20.1.11

A 'khap' or self-styled caste council in Bhenswal village of Uttar Pradesh's Muzaffarnagar district has given orders to ban girls from wearing jeans and using mobile phones, as they claim it invites unwanted attention for girls.

The Khap panchayat led by Battisa Khap Council head Baba Suraj passed the diktat which claimed that wearing jeans had a "bad effect" on young women and eve-teasing incidents had increased due to their objectionable clothes".

The panchayat also formed a five-member women committee to implement the ban.

"We have formed an all-woman team to curb this and would make the girls understand this issue. And we would also try to make them understand," said Baba Suraj.

He further said that in case a girl is found flouting the new diktats, she would be given a warning and if despite that she continues the 'objectionable behaviour', then she would not be allowed to go out from her house.

However, college students said such diktats are only for village women to follow while the girls in the city do not have any such rules.

 
"Nowadays it is a modern society and who can stop it? People like us cannot stop it. We can only bind ourselves. But we cannot bind people in the cities. Girls work there in fields like hotel management and they have to wear skirts, and we should stop them also, and even airhostesses also wear mini-skirts and thus they should be asked to wear sarees or suits (Ethnic attire)," said Ichha.

Despite the law, such incidents of curbing women's freedom are commonplace, especially in the remote villages of states such as Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.

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