Press Trust of India

VHP holds camp to train J&K girls in arts of self-defence, fight ‘love jihad’

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Jammu: VHP-affiliated ‘Durga Vahini’ held a training camp for girls in Jammu and Kashmir to teach them the arts of self-defence and how to keep their own during terror attacks, the right-wing outfit claimed here on Sunday.

Girls, all aged about 18, from 12 districts of the Union Territory participated in the week-long camp that started on July 3.

A VHP member said the camp was also aimed at making girls aware of ‘love jihad’– a term used by right wing activists to refer to an alleged conspiracy to convert Hindu girls to Islam by marrying them.

“We organised a seven-day training camp from July 3, focusing on self-defence and personality development,” Shabnam Khajuria, the head of Durga Vahini, told PTI.

The primary objective of this initiative was to enhance girls’ self-confidence and prepare them to combat all types of threats from terrorism to disasters in the region, she claimed.

“In addition to yoga and non-weapon techniques, the participants were trained in handling rifles and swords, enabling them to handle any situation effectively,” Shabnam said.

In all, 82 girls, all aged 18 and above, hailing from 12 districts of Jammu and Kashmir, particularly the border areas, participated in the camp, the group claimed.

Aditi Gupta, one of the trainees shared her experience saying, “The training in martial arts and weapon handling has made us physically and mentally strong. It has given us the self-confidence to face any situation. This is a lifelong learning process.”

Another trainee Asmita Gupta said that the girl will go back to their native places and teach others about such practices.

‘Durga Vahini’ is affiliated with the Vishva Hindu Parishad, a right-wing group which fervently champions Hindu supremacy.

“It serves as the female counterpart of the Bajrang Dal, a subsidiary of the Hindu nationalist organisation VHP, established in 1991. Women aged 18 to 35 are eligible to join and receive training in the camp,” Shakti Dhar Sharma, vice president, J&K VHP, told PTI.

He said they are educating women on the issues of love jihad and the challenges being faced by Hindus.

The camp operated from 4 am to 10.30 pm, dedicating four hours to the women’s mental and physical development, Sharma said.


Press Trust of India

Press Trust of India is lead news agency of India

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