Muslim elders in an Indian village have banned women from using mobile phones in public because they might use the phones to speak with men. Any woman found using a cell phone faces a fine of $325, a huge amount for most villagers.
The order was issued by the council of elders called the Khap panchayats. The village, Madora, is largely Muslim and located in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh. The order clearly violates Indian law and is being investigated.
One publication quotes the head of the council, Gaffar Khan, 45, as saying “The girls in our village are not much educated. We fear they might be led to a ‘wrong path’ and so to prevent it, restrictions are being imposed on girls to not use mobile phones in public or while walking through the village lanes.”
Of course, the men are clearly well educated and can use cell phones at any time. If intelligence is the measure, Gaffar Khan would be barred from even oral communications. Hopefully, the elders will face charges for violating Indian law and get the news over their cellphones with the question “Can you hear me now? It is the present day calling.”