Kiss of Love relevant: activists

Oppose attempts in the media to link Pashupalan’s arrest to the movement.

November 21, 2015 12:00 am | Updated November 16, 2021 04:20 pm IST - KOCHI:

Kochi, Kerala, 20/11/15 : Campingers of Kiss of Love movement addressing a press conference in Kochi on Friday. . Photo : Special

Kochi, Kerala, 20/11/15 : Campingers of Kiss of Love movement addressing a press conference in Kochi on Friday. . Photo : Special

After being hammered in the media following the arrest of Rahul Pashupalan in an online sex racket case, the activists of Kiss of Love (KOL) movement rallied together and reiterated that the cause for which it was launched still remained relevant.

Addressing a press conference here on Friday, activist Hareesh Vasudevan distanced the movement from Pashupalan and his partner Reshmi Nair stating that no one had anointed them as its spokespersons.

“It was the media which made Pashupalan an icon of KOL. We strongly protest attempts in the media to link his arrest to the movement and thereby tarnish its image. Tomorrow if I get arrested for some crime then the movement and its members are not to be blamed. The politics raised by KOL is still very much relevant and we stand by it,” he said.

He said that even the investigating officer hadn’t linked Pashupalan’s arrest to KOL. In fact, it was a complaint lodged by the KOL activists that led to the busting of the racket.

K.K. Shahina, journalist and an active campaigner of the movement, said that KOL was a show of resistance against fascist forces who were at the doorsteps.

“Asking whether KOL was a cover for flesh trade is anti-democratic. People associated with religious institutions and places of worship are also picked up for sexual crimes. Does that demean all those institutions?” she asked.

Ms. Shahina said she had strongly criticised Pashupalan for his comment in connection with the row involving Cherian Philip sometime back.

“I had then made a Facebook post that Pashupalan had not imbibed the spirit of KOL,” she said.

Asked why the KOL didn’t oppose when the media made Pashupalan its face, Ms. Shahina said that there was no need for it since he upheld the cause for which the movement stood. “We didn’t have time or interest to spend time in television studios. But that doesn’t mean we have to oppose someone who was doing it,” she said.

Ms. Shahina said that the State was yet to get used to movements like KOL, which is unlike the many structured organisations around. It is a common platform against fascism and we cannot ask for the biodata of every one who want to join it.

Mr. Hareesh wondered why KOL was being targeted when 5,000-odd paedophiles who liked the page run by the sex racket are still out of the realm of investigation.

The activists also released a statement titled ‘Kiss of Love shall prevail,” endorsed by activists from across the country and abroad.

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