Tuesday 10 February 2009

Loose women, chaddis and pink protest

A bunch of women in India are making pink pants to rustle up some attention against the bully boy tactics of some self-styled morality "guardians" who beat up both men and women in Mangalore for being "unIndian" a few weeks ago.
This is the best kind of protest: funny and effective, showing two frilly fingers up to these bullies.
If you didn't see the TV footage the bullies rushed around beating up men and women just going about their lives, doing what they had been doing for years, and ended up hospitalising a couple.
Sri Ram Sena is a far-right Hindu group which is trying to create some sort of conservative backlash against Indian women operating in modern India or wearing clothes that the Sri Ram Sena have somehow decided they are qualified to disapprove of.
In the spirit of the moment, the protesters have called themselves the Coalition of Pubgoing, Loose and Forward Women, and are using new media to get their message across. They have formed a Facebook group called the Pink Chaddi Collection, and it is showing just how useful it can be in spreading information and working up an international campaign.
My friend Anu is happily spending her time making the pink pants (chaddis), and co-ordinating with other members of the PCC team to get these packages delivered from all over India to the chief bully Pramod Muthalik in time for Valentine's Day, a date which he disapproves of very strongly.
It's one of the best St Valentine's messages ever. Soft, strong and very, very direct.

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