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Hugging in India: Why public display of hug is such a big no in India

I am very sure if you have watched Indian’s Telenovela and movies very well, you would have noticed that, hugs are normally ‘missing in action’ as compared to movies from America and other countries .

I believe, that all these movies and Telenovelas that we have been watching on our TVs, mostly displays traditions and cultures of the originating countries. 

My recent research has revealed that, In Indian, kissing and hugging in public is a taboo. However, same-sex physical contact is allowed. Because hugging is not a part of their culture, ‘free hugging’ on the streets of Indian is very strange as compared to other countries.


Why is hugging not allowed in India?

Under section 294 of the Indian Penal Code, causing annoyance to others through ‘obscene acts’ is a criminal offence with a punishment of imprisonment up to 3 months or a fine, or both.

The question is; is standing close to one another an ‘obscene act’? What if it’s a brother and a sister, or a father and a daughter, or even just friends for that matter? Does the law give a detailed definition of what comes under obscenity? Well, no! It does not. The law does not give an explicit definition of ‘obscene acts’.

Hug is an act of holding someone tightly in one's arms, typically to express affection. It is a form of endearment, universal in human communities, in which two or more people put their arms around the neck, back, or waist of one another, and hold each other closely. 

Hugging is an essential form of physical touch that humans rely on; from the moment, they are born throughout the rest of their lives. Depending on the type hug, it can be a sign of romantic intimacy, security, emotional support, friendship, or love.

Some people do asked… “Can you feel love and fall-in for the opposite sex through a hug”? The answer, according to experts is yes…when we reach out to hug, a chemical called oxytocin — also known as the ‘love hormone’ or 'bonding hormone’, kicks in, and makes us feel warm and fuzzy inside. 

According to experts, the effects of a warm embrace, can linger long after the hug, thereby promoting feelings of love trust, nurturing, and calm. 

With this, I think Indians forbids hugging because they are trying to prevent harmful sexual behaviors among the youth and the population as a whole.

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