Mumbai Police on Thursday issued a directive to all police stations across the city to increase patrolling at beaches, colleges and parks in order to prevent any untoward incidents in the run-up to Valentine’s Day on February 14.
The officials said there was a possibility that right-wing organisations and political parties may hold protests, during which they often “harass young couples”. Mumbai Police have received instructions to ensure that such incidents are prevented, said officials.
There have been such incidents in the past when members of such organisations have even taken photos and videos of the harassment and posted them on social media.
“They have filmed the incident on their mobile phones to terrorise couples or bring such activities to light. So, in order to avoid such instances, all police stations in Mumbai have been told to take precautionary measures,” said a police officer.
The notification further stated that senior inspectors of all police stations have been ordered to be on high alert at beaches, colleges and parks in their areas. “… They have also been instructed to constantly patrol shops that sell Valentine’s Day gifts as some people also vandalise these shops, because of their belief that it is against Indian culture,” added an officer.
Another officer said he has directed personnel at police stations to get information on workers who are affiliated to right-wing organisations, in an effort to avoid such incidents. Police will also ensure that they get information beforehand and accordingly depute personnel at the respective places.
“As local trains have started and February 14 is a Sunday, young people are likely to come together. Therefore, special attention will be paid to college campuses,” said an official.
Police officials added that strict action will be taken against those who take the law into their own hands via acts of vandalism and beatings.