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Wednesday, 5 November 2014

300 protesting IIT-Bombay students and faculty hug, kiss......

MUMBAI: Students at IIT-Bombay's Powai campus were greeted by an unusual sight on Sunday evening. Around 300 students and six faculty members were hugging and planting kisses on each other's cheek on the convocation hall lawns to mark their protest against moral policing in support of the 'Kiss of Love' campaign in Kochi.

A group of youngsters from Kochi organized a similar event on Sunday there after activists of the young wing of a political party indulged in moral policing at a show last week.

After gathering at the venue, two of the organizers, one each from the Progressive and Democratic Students' Collective and Saathi, the support group on campus for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer community, spoke about the incident and why it was wrong. They also spoke about them being "ideologically against moral policing", mentioning a couple of incidents on the campus too. After singing songs on friendship and protest, such as "Yaaron Dosti" from Rockford and "We Shall Overcome", they marched towards the main gate carrying placards with messages such as "Love is not immoral, moral policing is", "Just cause I walked with a guy doesn't mean he is my boyfriend, stop judging", and "Moral fascism, down down".

Gauri Saha, a student, said, "Moral policing is curbing the freedom to expressing love to someone and is prevalent both inside and outside the campus." She also spoke about gender inequality in the society and the skewed sex ratio on the campus—around 1:10.

A French student on the campus who identified herself as Helen said, "It is good to see that so many people from the campus have come out and voiced their opinion in India. I hope the freedom of expression of love will not be a taboo here in future."