Our country churns out many romantic movies day in and day out. If anyone would see the list of movies then they would wonder that the country is filled with romance and love, with couples moving around freely. They would think that the country has an inbuilt culture of song and dance and celebrating the sizzling chemistry that only two lovers experience. But sadly that is not the case. By a long way.
I have a habit of observing people around me closely sometimes and seeing how they react to certain situations. This habit has developed overtime and it helps that I have a level of patience that many would envy. In my observations while moving around the city of Mumbai where I reside, I notice how the city and I think the country at large should just let couples have their time and stop making them uncomfortable.
We need to redefine what constitutes as vulgar and what constitutes as not. We also need to redefine whether if something is vulgar then, is it indecent only for me or for others as well? And if it is indecent then do I have a right to intervene in between two consenting adults or whether I should just swallow my discomfort and walk away? Whether any third person has a right to come between two mature and consenting adults? Questions we all need to answer as a society.
The media has taken up cases of Anti Romeo squads and poked fun at the thought process of the incumbent ruling government. But is that same thought process not prevalent elsewhere in the society at large where in people continue to leer at couples? Where the older generation continues to look at young couples as if they are committing a sin for which they will be sent to hell? In such a country, Anti Romeo squads are bound to exist because a huge section of the society indirectly supports it. We all know that the generation aged above 30 age still does not support open displays of affection and some of the youngsters too. Is it problem of the couple or the society? You decide.
Does sitting with your partner with an embrace in a public place promote indecency? Is walking with your partner hand in hand something wrong? Is walking with an arm around each other wrong? Is pecking your partner in public vulgar? Is kissing your partner in public something which is devoid of morals? What is particularly wrong about it?
It is about time we realize that being affectionate to one’s partner in public or private is nothing wrong. It is about time we stop staring and invading the privacy of people and keep on minding our own businesses. It is about time that the police and the protectors of culture realize that love is something which is natural and that beating them up is not protecting culture. It is only showing an immature thought process which has not evolved while the world has evolved.
I live on the outskirts of Mumbai. At public places even young couples sitting closely are frowned upon and looked at as if they are doing something highly immoral. There have been many instances wherein the guy and sometimes even the girl is beaten up by people from the bullying political party of Maharashtra. Instances wherein the police regularly harasses couples and thinks of affection as sin. Really? Is it so bad? Or should they be focussed on catching the real criminals out there? We all need to answer that. It is sometimes funny to think that the protectors of culture feel kissing is wrong but thrashing people up isn’t.
I am sure many youngsters would relate to the fact that they are sitting with their partners eating somewhere or walking somewhere and people just staring at them weirdly. Why? Why cannot the society let them be? Why doesn’t the society mind their own work?
If the situation is such in a city like Mumbai then I can only imagine what the case will be in other parts of India. How will love blossom in a society where it is frowned upon?
India needs to become a more liberated space wherein couples can choose their partners with free will, sit around where they want to, be affectionate when they want to and enjoy their lives. If they are not disturbing someone then why is someone else disturbing them? I know time will go till things like this become normal but the initiative and talks must begin as to redraw the boundaries of what makes normal behaviour and what not. This must be done according to present day sensibilities and those having a problem must focus on themselves. There are better things to do and if you seriously have problems then you will realize the problem is of your thinking. That must change. Hopefully soon!