India : BERHAMPUR: A body of Orissa's Paikali Khandayat caste banned the use of mobile phones among unmarried girls to prevent them from ``going astray''.
"Girls fall in love after they come into contact with boys through mobile phones. This creates trouble,'' Ganjam-based Paikali Khandayat Samaj said in a statement. "The Samaj feels there is no urgency for unmarried girls to use mobile phones. So, we have advised parents not to encourage their unmarried daughters to use these devices. There is nothing wrong in this directive and several educational institutes have also prohibited the use of mobile phones on their campuses," Samaj president Somanath Nayak said.
The decision was taken by leaders of the caste during a three-day meeting at Dangibandh village. There are over 10,000 Paikali Khandayat families in Orissa's Ganjam district.
The Samaj, however, has not decided on the punishment for those who violate the diktat. ``This directive has been issued on an experimental basis. So, we are not going to impose any fine on those defying it. However, we have advised members of our caste to strictly follow the ban,'' Nayak said.
While issuing a diktat on banning mobile phones, the Samaj stressed on improving education standards among the caste. ``We have adopted a resolution making it compulsory for students of our caste to attend school at least till Class X. We have also advised our members to ensure their children continue their education, irrespective of their gender,'' the Samaj chief said.