Quiet anniversary for Kiss of Love


Kiss of Love protest celebrates a year; no point in making it a ritualistic affair.

: When the first ever the Kiss of Love protest took place, it happened in front of an animated crowd waiting to see how kissing in public would be like. Now, one year since the protest, the State has been home to a series of similar protests—be it the napkin protest, beef festivals or breaking curfew.

But as the landmark event is set to celebrate its first anniversary on November 2, the organisers of KOL in Kochi insist that there will be no more locking of lips to protest moral fascism.

“This is just because the KOL movement has entered the next stage and is gradually evolving into different forms of protests against right-wing cultural fascism,” explained Rahul Pasupalan, an active volunteer of the KOL movement.

According to him, the biggest contribution of the KOL movement in Kerala is that it succeeded in raising public debates on otherwise forbidden topics like menstruation or sexuality. “While the resistance from the right-wing has only increased over this period, we have been able to draw more people, especially youngsters into our fold,” added Mr. Pasupalan, an IT professional turned film maker.

B. Arundhathi, who was instrumental in holding the KOL protest on the Hyderabad Central University campus, emphasised the kiss in protests were organised as the times then warranted them. “Looking back, we have been able to bring about a shift in the attitude of civil society towards moral policing. Those days are over and there is no point in making it a ritualistic affair, even celebrating a first anniversary,” she held. While conceding that the movement has failed in to evolving itself as a national platform, she, however, maintained that there was no need to confine the KOL in a monolithic format.

“We are glad to see the KOL sparking off several other movements in all parts of the country, as evident from the protests on the Pune FTII or the one at Farook College campus in Kozhikode,” said Arundhathi, currently pursuing her post graduate degree in Political Science.

Organisers say movement is evolving into different forms of protests.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 5:05:52 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/quiet-anniversary-for-kiss-of-love/article7816623.ece

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