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India: Israeli Couple Fined for Kissing in Public | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Srinagar, India, Asharq Al-Awsat- An Israeli couple were fined 100 rupees (the equivalent of 24$ US) on Tuesday after being found guilty of public display of affection at a Hindu place of worship.

Alon and Selver Kurmit had traveled to India to marry according to traditional Hindu rituals, but ran into trouble when they kissed each other, two weeks ago, in front of priests conducting the ceremony, by the banks of the sacred Lake Pushkar, in the northern state of Rajasthan.

The priests attacked the couple for “violating” the religious sanctity of the town and lodged a police complaint against them.

The couple were arrested and later released after posting bail of 10,000 rupees (320$ US). The Israeli man and woman apologized to the court and admitted they did not know kissing in public was considered an offence in India.

According to Star TV, an Indian television news channel, the couple will serve 10 days in jail if they fail to pay the fine.

Last year, a group of drunken Israeli tourists angered local villagers when they held a dance party scantily closed, provoking a number of protests.

The number of Israel tourists visiting Lake Pushkar has increased in recent years with 15% of the 70,000 to 80,000 foreigners traveling to the town hailing from Israel.