Couple beaten up and thrashed for hugging in metro by mob, Kolkata youth stage protest
India ‘moral police’ is incredibly active- informal neighborhood groups that enforce conservative views and forbids couple from indulging in ‘immoral activities’ like kissing, hugging or even holding hands. Public Display of Affection in India is largely frowned upon. While some metropolitans like Mumbai have seen a little progress in this arena, mainly due to the presence of Bollywood, PDA has a long way to endure before being socially acceptable.
A recent incident which took place in Kolkata served as another example of how expressing of love is seen as a sinister act.
A couple, which was using the metro in the city, was persecuted, assaulted and thrown out of it for an absurd reason- they were standing too close to each other and were hugging.
According to picture clicked from a mobile phone on late Monday night, the wife throws herself over her husband to protect him from the slaps, kicks, and punches that were being landed on him for the ‘wrongdoing’.
The incident took place around 10 pm inside the metro coach in Kolkata. The couple’s act of hugging might have offended the fellow passengers, for they raised objections at them, abused them and ultimately started to physically assault them. This public display of affection was too much to handle to the co-riders.
The couple was mauled and then pushed out of the metro at Dum Dum metro station. Those who pushed them out mainly consisted of middle-aged and elderly men.
According to the witnesses, both the man and the woman were beaten till the passengers from another coach intervened, cut the assault and dragged them to safety. The pictures taken by the witnesses reached the office of the Metro rail and since have been widely in circulation on social media.
The officials say that they are examining the full footage to actually see what happened and justify the lack of any action by the railway police.
An eyewitness Ujjwal Chakraborty said that the couple was constantly being harassed and asked questions about hugging in the public, as per a report. From “Why aren’t you going to a pub on Park Street?” to “Why don’t you get a room?” – a range of questions was hurled at the couple.
There is no record of any official complaint being filed with the Metro. The people of Kolkata have mixed stances regarding the incident. Some say that PDA like this hardly garners any attention while others believed once somebody passes a comment or makes a taunting remark, a herd mindset seems to take over.
But one thing is sure, whenever two persons indulge in PDA, it attracts the stares of the people and their judgy mindsets. They are believed to leave spots on the society and morally corrupt it. A time when freedom is finally accepted is a far-fetched dream for India.