Rahul Pashupalan and his wife Resmi Nair, the leaders of the controversial 'Kiss of Love' campaign in Kerala, have been arrested on charges of running an online sex racket.
The couple allegedly helped a group in supplying minor children to pedophiles.
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Six others, including gangster Akbar, two women and a minor have also been caught during the raid operation titled 'Big Daddy', led by DIG S Sreejith with the help of cyber police on Tuesday and Wednesday. However, three others, including a man and two women are said to have escaped in a car during the raid.
How police tracked them?
Recently, a Facebook page named "Kochu Sundarikal" hit the headlines as it had photos of young girls with vulgar comments by paedophiles. The Kerala police had arrested Vijesh, Sujith, Sony Kurian, Chandrakumar and Pradeep in connection with the case.
As the number of cyber crimes increased in Kerala recently, investigative officers were divided into four teams. They prepared the list of sex racket websites and contacted the numbers given on them. It was through one such site that police contacted Abdul Kadar, who hails from Kozhikode. It was Kadar who gave Rahul and Resmi's photographs and details about them. He even asked to give Rs 5 lakh for five girls. After bargaining with him, the police made a deal and gave him an advance amount. Later, a woman named Linish Mathew brought minor girls from Bengaluru to Kerala and the police arrested them.
When the police asked for more girls, the team brought two others. However, they escaped. Later, Rahul, Resmi and their son were arrested from a hotel near Cochin International Airport.
Who is Resmi and What is "Kiss of Love"?
Resmi is a popular model at Playboy Miss Social and is known for her sensual photographs. Resmi was recently in the news after her topless photos went viral on social media. She is followed by more than 20,000 users on Facebook.
The idea of "Kiss of Love", the first public kissing event came to being after the BJP youth wing Yuva Morcha vandalised a coffee shop in Calicut. The protesters claimed that the cafe was propagating the "western culture" of kissing and dating. The activists even attacked the customers for enjoying some "intimate" moments in the cafe.
Following this, the first "Kiss of Love" event was held at Kochi's Marine Drive that gained a lot of media attention and resulted in a clash between its supporters and protesters.