Published: 03rd December 2020
Here's why AISA started a campaign called 'Love Azad' against the 'love jihad' laws
The campaign that is currently online, aims to create conversations around inter-caste and inter-faith relationships and normalise them
As a novel form of protest against the new anti-love jihad law in a few Indian states, the All India Students' Association (AISA) has started a campaign called 'Love Azad' 'to assert women’s right to be in love and to choose her partner freely.' The campaign that is currently online, aims to create conversations around inter-caste and inter-faith relationships and normalise them.
"These communal terms are being actively used by the government to sideline the important issues. We believe that love must be free and that anyone must be free to love whoever they want," says N Sai Balaji, AISA National President. "The only alternative to lie is truth, Through this campaign, we want to let people know that the youth are not going to go down by hate. It is a woman's choice and autonomy to love anyone," he adds.
While currently, they have been widely sharing artwork, poems and articles to create conversation, they plan to soon carry large demonstrations against the love jihad laws. Balaji also says that the campaign will soon share stories of couples who have married across faiths, against hurdles. When asked if the campaign is similar to the popular Instagram handle 'India Love Project' that shares stories of interfaith couples, Balaji says, "This campaign is different because it aims to fight these fake narrative. The idea of the campaign was only conceived in the past few weeks after the conversations around love jihad started escalating."
The Uttar Pradesh government, recently made its first arrest under its new anti-conversion law.
AISA's Delhi State General Secretary Prasenjit, on the other hand, said that university students across the country have expressed their solidarity with the campaign. "A lot of them have been sending us videos, narrating their stories and experiences. We will be posting them soon and will be conducting panel discussions on this issue," he said.