Saturday, February 20, 2016

Indian village bans girls from using mobile phones in flirting crackdown...

Unmarried women have been banned from using mobile phones by the elders of an Indian village who fear that flirtatious texting and endless phone calls could lead to a breakdown of society.

Teenage girls and young women who are caught owning or even speaking on mobile phones in Suraj, Gujarat will face a 2,100 rupee (£20) fine. Informers who catch them in the act will be financially rewarded.

“Young girls get misguided. It can break families and ruin relationships,” Raikarnji Thakor, a community leader, told the Hindustan Times. He added that the ban was “the villagers’ idea”.

Use of smartphones across India has shot up in recent years, with more than 200 million users expected by the end of 2016, surpassing the US.

The freedom afforded to teenagers to swap messages, photographs and videos with members of the opposite sex using services such as WhatsApp has caused concern in highly conservative, rural places such as Suraj.

 There were also worries among the villagers over the cost of their daughters’ mobile internet bills. Full story...

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