Yesterday, on International Women’s day, when the world was celebrating the day by calling for gender equality, Shiv Sena in an alleged incident were caning couples sitting at the Marine Drive walkway in Kochi. This harassment took place on Wednesday evening in the presence of media persons and policemen.
The Shiv Sena workers chased the couples and manhandled them at Marine Drive, while the police stood as mute spectators and did not take any action initially.
Around 3:30 PM almost 25 members of Shiv Sena barged at the venue where the ‘Kiss of Love’ campaign was conducted two-and-half years ago. The workers started humiliating the couples to keep the area free.
As per Times Now, the Shiv Sena alleged that the Marine Drive had become a spot of several sex-trade rackets which eyes to lure young girls into flesh trade. This was the reason for carrying out the protest. The campaign was a part to help curb the rise in sexual assault cases against women. Sometimes, school going children observe physical intimacy at this location, they claimed.
Many eye-witnesses testified that the protest by Shiv Sena workers was a blatant act of moral policing. Some of the couples fled as the attack started while few who were reluctant were beaten and abused. The Shiv Sena workers continued to assault them without any remorse.
They also managed to scare away the youth in the presence of Sub-Inspector Vijay Shankar from the Ernakulam central station. Many are questioning the police for taking no actions.
The Police detained six persons in connection with the incident and also booked them under non-bailable charges for obstructing government servants from discharging their duty and assaulting people. A police sub-inspector was suspended and eight constables were transferred for their failure to prevent the harassment.
The arrested are identified as K Y Kunjumon, T R Devan, chairman of the State political affairs committee, Shiv Sena, K U Ratheesh, T R Lenin, A V Vineesh, and K K Liju, who belong to the party’s Ernakulam district unit.
Some of the official sources said that they knew about the moral policing drive and had alerted the couples and asked them to disperse.