Delhiites raise eyebrows at PDA

Kiss of Love supporters create traffic jam, fail to sell their message

Delhiites were caught unawares by the controversial ‘Kiss of Love’ campaign organised in central Delhi’s Jhandewalan on Saturday.

A protest outside Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s Keshav Kunj office was publicised on Facebook, but hardly anyone in the area seemed to be aware about the event.

The Facebook page claimed 11,000 people were invited to attend the event, and 1,600 attended it. Police, however, said the event saw about 500 people in attendance around Jhandewalan Metro station.

“I have been working with a bank here for the last five years, but never saw such big crowd in all these years. There were so many people around the Metro station and even on the road. But most of them were not even aware of the reason behind the crowd. Initially, I feared if some tragedy had taken place here,” says Rakesh Kumar, who works with ICICI Bank.

Due to the active Facebook page and the controversy, the RSS office was heavily fortified by police and no permission was granted to participants to go near Keshav Kunj.

But youngsters began to gather in the area from 3 pm and marched on for around two kilometres until they were stopped by 40-50 RSS workers near Desh Bandhu Gupta Road.

Despite the message that the campaign aims to promote, most of the onlookers, who saw couples kissing, felt that it promoted obscenity.

“It is a waste of time and nothing sensible. If you love someone, you have full right to make him or her feel in your way. But in our culture we have few more things to consider. We cannot westernise ourselves in everything that we see in the movies or according to whatever the Westerners do,” said Abhinandan Kaushik, 36, a resident of Kalkaji.

Tohid Khan, who works with a courier agency, added that there are few boundaries that should be respected and taken care of while expressing love.

“Love your loved ones, but within the boundaries. Not just patriotism, but our culture too makes us Indian enough to stand as an Indian amongst a crowd of a thousand non-Indians,” he said.

Others highlighted that students should concentrate more on studying and competing with top universities rather than indulging in protests.

It was also claimed that the organisers were also flooded with phone calls and text messages from alleged RSS workers.

“We are not against love, I am a young man too. But we oppose any expression of love that goes against our traditions and against Hindu society. The country also has a law against indecent behaviour in public. These are a few misguided youths who are affiliated with NGOs and want to attract media attention,” Vishnu Gupta, national president of the Hindu Sena, told a news channel.

Fearing disruption of law and order, Delhi Police had deployed heavy force and requested Delhi Metro to close the gates of Jhandewalan Metro station for a brief period.

The controversial movement also led to traffic disruption in the area for over two hours.

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