Disappointing turnout for Calcutta love protest

A kissing and hugging protest by people wanting a special love zone in Calcutta has failed to live up to expectations.

A kissing and hugging protest by people wanting a special love zone in Calcutta has failed to live up to expectations.

Only six couples from the Lovers' Organisation for Voluntary Exhibition turned out for the demonstration.

One pair are reported to have said many were put off by the intense heat.

Members of Love want to be able to hug and kiss in public without being harassed by hawkers and policemen.

They planned to hug and kiss each other in front of the mayor's office to protest against his refusal to create a love zone in the city.

Newspaper Saanj Samachar says the organisation claims to have 750 members aged between 18 and 45.

Authorities had warned tough action against a public demonstration of love saying it was "alien to Indian culture".

The paper quotes an unnamed couple as saying: "The intense heat kept a lot of us away but the poor attendance must in no way be regarded as a weakening of our resolve. We are determined to fight for an exclusive zone for lovers until the end."

Spectator Abhijit Sanyal told the paper: "The few who showed up were over the hill, middle aged couples facing an identity crisis. They are probably seeking attention and probably get some but no-one takes their demands seriously."

A police spokesman said: "It's good they did not create trouble. Maybe it was because of the tight security. They should realise we are not against love. The only objection is against people wanting to make a public spectacle of it."

More in this section

IE_logo_newsletters

Select your favourite newsletters and get the best of Irish Examiner delivered to your inbox