Mangaluru, Oct 13: Social media platforms were flooded with shocking reactions after Karnataka chief minister Basavaraj Bommai indirectly defended the increasing cases of immoral rowdyism (also known as immoral policing or moral policing) in Mangaluru and other parts of coastal Karnataka.
Netizens started the #BommaiStopMoralPolicing campaign on social Twitter and Facebook in protest against CM’s indirectly endorsement to people taking law into their own hands.
Speaking to reporters in Mangaluru, Bommai said that "some youth should make sure that sentiments are not hurt" and added that it was a "societal issue". Indirectly comparing interfaith affairs to immorality, he said that if the actions hurt sentiments then there will be reactions.
Congress and JD(S) members opined that such statements embolden anti-social elements involved in such incidents and warned that tacit support to such activities could turn Karnataka into another cow-belt state.
Congress spokesperson Lavanya Ballal attacked Bommai for issuing a statement in support of moral policing. "When the CM of the state supports moral policing what more can be expected from the minions? Citizens of Karnataka please stay safe, don’t expect the government to keep you safe," she said in a tweet.
JD(S) IT wing head Prathap Kanagal said that Bommai's remarks reflected a "sad state of affairs". "With this justification by our Karnataka CM Bommai, they are normalising mob attacks in the name of Moral policing in Karnataka," he said.
Twitter user Glen D'Souza accused Bommai of turning Karnataka into another Uttar Pradesh. "Karnataka the land of Basava (is) known as 'Shantiya Thota'. Today under Bommai, Karnataka is rapidly is turning to be another Uttar Pradesh," he claimed.
Activist Vinay Sreenivasa echoed a similar sentiment. "Moral Policing always destroys fundamental rights of an individual. It is an act by primitive minds and fascist forces to further divide society and destroy harmony. Give back our old Karnataka," wrote another user.
Youth Congress leader Mohammed Haris Nalapad said that such careless statements raised questions on the safety of people, who look up to the government to safeguard their interests. "This rudderless Govt is only busy fanning the fire of hate incidents in Karnataka," he alleged.