In a distinct way of protesting against the scourge of alcoholism, Kerala Catholic Bishops’ Council (KCBC) Madyaviruddha Samithi organised a symbolic march to the Chief Minister’s residence, at Puthuppally on Monday.
The march was made unique by a group of girl students, who dressed up in military fatigues and reached the residence of Chief Minister Oommen Chandy in a vehicle which was embellished as the archetype of a Defence helicopter, on Monday morning.
According to the Samithi office-bearers, it was the launch of a symbolic protest and an awareness programme against the growing threat posed by rampant alcoholism. “When a natural calamity or catastrophe occurs in our country, the Defence personnel swing into action to rescue the people. Alcoholism is a growing threat to our society and hence, military-like intervention is needed to save the public. So, we selected the military-clad style to register our protest,” said Prasad Kuruvila, KCBC Madyaviruddha Samithi president.
He added that women suffered the most from the ill-effects of alcoholism in families, and so, girl students were chosen to take out the protest march.
It also marked the launch of a state-wide protest and awareness campaign spearheaded by Madyaviruddha Samithi, against alcoholism, and the protest will be extended to other districts too.
“We will continue our campaigning in the coming days too, focusing on schools and public places. We will organise campaigns in various schools in the Pala region on Wednesday, and later at other public places,” Prasad said.
The campaigning will continue till October 10.
Pala Diocese Bishop Mar Joseph Kallarangattu inaugurated the campaign on Monday, by handing over the symbolic torch to Prasad Kuruvila, at Pala at 10 am. Pala municipal chairman Kuriakose Padavan spoke on the occasion.
The police blocked the march when it reached the Chief Minister’s residence.