Celebrating Valentine's Day in Hyderabad's parks wasn't really an option for young couples today. Allegedly because of threats from right-wing groups who believe Valentine's Day is incompatible with Indian culture, the police ordered most parks to open a few hours later than usual.
Officials of the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) said the parks would remain closed till 4 pm, provoking protests from students, who gathered at the city's Indira Park and were arrested for a few hours. At their demonstration, they suggested that the police should have provided protection to couples in the park, rather than caving in to threats and declaring the venue off-limits.
Though it's not uncommon for extreme right-wing groups to warn against Valentine's Day being marked, this is the first time that parks were kept closed for a few hours.
The city's large public garden, Sanjeevaiah, usually the favourite haunt of couples, was scheduled to open at 4.30 pm today instead of 9 am.