23 May 2006 , ANI

Jaipur: Women's wing of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) has begun giving arms training to its cadre in an apparent bid to empower them against atrocities.

Durga Vahini, affiliated to the VHP or World Hindu Council, is training its members to use small arms and rifles at a camp in Jaipur.

Organisers said the motive was to develop fighting and self-protecting skills, especially when crimes against women were on the rise.

"The Durga Vahini has organised this camp to help the women attain self confidence. A number of crimes are being committed against women, therefore, we want instil confidence in them so that they can become strong and self-reliant," said organiser of the camp Usha Shekhawat on Monday.

In Hindu mythology Durga is depicted as a trident bearing powerful Goddess, who vanquished a demon to save the Gods and the women's regiment is named after her.

Ex-army men have been called to train the cadre in shooting and physical combat.

Some of the trainees said the camp instilled confidence in them. "The camp has given us confidence that we can fight against any kind of situation and adversity," said Nandini, a woman from the Durga Vahini cadre.

The camp, which started on May 18, would conclude on May 25.
The Durga Vahini was in news during Valentine Day when they targeted shops selling cards and gifts and western restaurants where couples were found spending intimate moments.