Amid rising tension between India and Pakistan, a YouTuber in Kolkata conducted an eight-hour social experiment in the city, where he held a poster which read, "I AM FROM PAKISTAN...PLEASE HUG/SLAP ME."
Arifuddin Molla, a first-year student at Bhangar Mahavidyalay in Kolkata, conducted this experiment after the Central government scrapped Article 370, to find out how people really feel about Pakistan and its people, he told Times of India.
"There seems to be widespread support for the move, and so I wanted to find out whether our perception of Pakistan, too, had changed," said Molla.
He was pleasantly surprised to find out that he did not receive a single slap from people while he stood for eight hours, from 12 Ppm to 8 pm, on Saturday near one of the entrances of the Dhakuria Lake.
Molla is one of the founders of YouTube channel 'The Funky Express' and will go one to upload snippets of this social experiment on August 14, the eve of Indian Independence Day and the day of Pakistan Independence Day.
Explaining the reactions to his experiment, Molla said that people were first hesitant to approach him. "But some came up and hugged me and some of them asked me where I was from. I was from Lahore, was my general reply. But to those who kept on asking more questions and seemed genuine to help me, I explained the purpose behind what I was doing and that I was also a Kolkatan, like all of them," he said.
The Kolkata Youtuber was afraid that there may be people who will have extreme reactions, but he was prepared for anything, including being hit. He was happy that nothing bad took place.
"But we are so happy that over the entire period, we received only love, with some persons even coming forward and willing to help me with money or whatever else I needed. There was only one uncle who cross-questioned me for a good 15 minutes, took my photos and then left without even shaking my hand," said Molla.