Asserting that there should be no discrimination on the basis of gender, National Commission for Women chairperson Mamta Sharma on Monday said there is no need to impose a ban on an all-girl rock band from Kashmir.
"This is absolutely wrong. Every individual has his own mindset, traditions and customs, but I believe that if we stop these girls from doing something so many years after independence, then it reflects our dual attitude," said Sharma.
"On one hand we say that there should be no difference on the basis of sex and on the other hand we impose restrictions on girls. This is absolutely incorrect," she added.
Support has poured in for KashmirValley's first all-girl rock band -- Pragaash -- which was forced to stop live shows following threats and criticism on social networking sites.
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah has also backed the band. He stated that it was a shame that those who claimed freedom of speech via social media used that very freedom to threaten girls who have the right to choose to sing.
"I hope these talented young girls will not let a handful of morons silence them. The police will examine the threats issued and whether any provision of the law can be used to book those making the threats. Shame on those who claim freedom of speech via social media and then use that freedom to threaten girls who have the right to choose to sing," he tweeted.
The members of the all-girl band have been receiving warnings, even rape threats, on the social media ever since they first performed in Srinagar two months ago. This band has received abusive and hate messages on their Facebook page for defying convention by choosing the field of music.
Farah Deeba, Aneka Khalid and Noma Nazir started receiving the threats soon after Pragaash's first live performance at Srinagar's Battle of the Bands -- an annual music festival -- in December last year.
The criticisms have hit the morale of these young girls, but they have remained defiant and are fighting on.
Nazir, 16, is the vocalist and guitarist of the band. Khalid, 15, is the bass guitarist and Deeba, 15, is the drummer.
The focus of this band, which has decided against performing in public for now, is on producing an album.
The band Pragaash, which means moving from darkness to light, was formed last year.