Is it a crime to celebrate love? Would a romantic tradition encourage casual sex?
Certain countries in Asia, such as Indonesia and Pakistan think that yes it is and have deliberately chosen to ban the Saint Valentine day’ celebration denouncing a festival of immortality, nudity, and indecency under the guise of love. In a laic country as Indonesia, whose ideology’s state differs from the religious ideology, Muslims follow a moderate form of Islam in a country with large Christian and Hindu minorities, and Valentine’s Day is gaining every year more popularity.This year, certain towns such as Surabaya ordered schools to ban the celebration and the police of Macassar, attacked some Minimarts and seizing condoms to prevent sexual practice.
In Pakistan, two years ago, Valentine’s Day became undesirable. Indeed, as a deeply conservative Muslim country, Pakistan give a great importance to the fact that Western society does not take precedence over the muslim culture with its deviant practices of morality and the Valentine’s Day was declared banned by Islamic law in 2012. In 2016, President Mamnoon Hussain urged Pakistani youth to focus on his studies rather than celebrating lovers’ day. Last year it was the Islamabad High Court that banned all festivities across the country. The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA), the Higher Council of the local audio-visual, took charge of reminding to the media: “Medias must make sure that no information on the celebration or promotion of Valentine’s day will only be disclosed in the web and paper press. ”





In Cambodia, a Buddhist country, oscillating today between tradition and modernity, the celebration of Valentine’s Day, has also become a real problem because for women it rhymes more with harassment than with romanticism. Indeed In a country with a strong rape culture, the Saint Valentine is an opportunity for men to have sex with women regardless of their consent. Women rarely complain because they are conditioned to think that it is their fault and if they are raped, they do not talk about it for fear of being rejected and to see their family losing face. Let us not forget that sex education has made its timid appearance in Cambodia in textbooks in 2013 and must now be generalized to the whole country. To stem the phenomenon, the police organized patrols around the guesthouses. The Ministry of Education has organized exams on D-Day to dissuade absentees and sends out warning messages every year. “To buy each other’s flowers is good, but if it’s a maneuver to go beyond friendship and if this gesture leads to losing its virginity, it violates our culture”, even alerted last year, Minister Hang Chuon Naron.
In other Asian countries, the authorities have chosen to adopt a different attitude and take preventive measures to protect the festivities and encourage sexual practices. This is the case in Thailand, for example, where the Thai government, concerned about declining birth rates, has distributed vitamins to married couples to encourage them to have children.
In East India, two members of Bajrang Dal, the youth wing of the Hindu World Council and four political party activists were placed in pre-trial detention to ensure they will not disrupt celebrations. In Bhubaneswar, the state capital of Odisha, security has been strengthened in parks, shopping malls, and cinemas. Finally, Mumbai, the Hindu-nationalist Shiv Sena party, abandoned its opposition against Valentine’s Day after its activists had in the past beaten couples who just spent the day together.





In Vietnam, ‘Le Tình Nhân’ the Vietnamese expression for the Valentine day, is what it should be, simply an opportunity to say ‘I love you’, to share some joy and romanticism and an opportunity to party. Because Yes, Vietnamese people love to party, and the proof is they multiplied the Valentine’s Day! The Red Valentine, is the traditional Valentine’s day, taking place on February 14th. The White Valentine’s Day, set for March 14, is the time when the boy meets his girlfriend’s friends. A good test to know if the boy is the right candidate for the girl and finally, the black Valentin, on April 14, which is a tradition born in South Korea where people remaining single after February 14 meet dress in black to party and forget their single status!

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Bliss Saigon is an online magazine dedicated to the Art of living in Ho Chi Minh City and Asia. The magazine present a unique editorial approach based on experts and influencers contributions, written with optimism, humor and accessibility, offering an interactive and ludic reading on lifestyle topics with sharp selections for unique insights.