Muthalik taken into preventive custody

Vicky Nanjappa in Bengaluru | February 13, 2009 17:55 IST
Last Updated: February 13, 2009 18:43 IST

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The Karnataka police have taken Pramod Muthalik [Images], the founder of the Shri Ram Sena and 136 other activists into preventive custody ahead of Valentine's Day.

Muthalik was picked up by the Gulbarga police from the Kamalaput railway station. He was travelling from Bangalore to Gulbarga when he was picked up.

The Sri Ram Sene had opposed the celebration of Valentine's Day and had announced that he had formed five teams to go around the city on Valentine's Day. "Our team members would have a video camera and also a turmeric stub. If our team member finds anyone dating, we will force them to get married . We will take the couple to the sub-registrar's office and the marriage will be solemnised," he said.

Meanwhile to ensure peace and calm, the Bangalore police have taken into preventive custody 136 members of the Sena. The detention comes in the wake of a specific threat by Sena members to disrupt Valentine's Day celebrations across the state.

Although Muthalik had claimed that there would be no protest in Bangalore, the police went ahead and detained him as a precautionary measure. The police say that they do not want to take any chances and ensure that law and order is maintained in the state.

Valentine's Day celebrations across the state were mired in controversy after the Sena decided to don the role of a moral policeman. This move was countered by a set of women who decided to send 1000 pink chaddis to Muthalik. Muthalik however decided to counter this move by sending back a 1000 sarees.

On Thursday Muthalik decided to call off protests in Bangalore as he suspected that some miscreants may create trouble and the Sena would be blamed. He however stated that protests in other parts of the state would go on while adding that the Sena had managed to make an impact.