Families Outraged As UP Cops Stop Interfaith Marriage in Lucknow
Both the families wanted the wedding to happen and have expressed displeasure at the police’s actions.
The mother of the Hindu bride whose wedding was stopped by the Uttar Pradesh Police on Wednesday, 2 December in Lucknow under the new anti-conversion law said that the marriage had their sanction and religious conversion was never an issue in the wedding.
“My happiness lies in my daughter’s happiness. There is no issue of conversion in this marriage. Neither the boy asked the girl to change her religion, nor did the girl ever talk to the boy about conversion,” said the bride Priya’s (name changed) mother.
The UP police had previously stopped the interfaith marriage of Farhan (name changed) and Priya acting on the complaint filed by the members of Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha. Both the groom and the bride’s family expressed displeasure at the wedding being cancelled and said that no outsider had the right to interfere in the internal matter of the family.
The Family Was Unaware of the New Ordinance
The marriage was stopped by the police under the ‘UP Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Ordinance, 2020’. According to the police, permission has to be obtained from the District Magistrate for having an interfaith marriage. The family members, however, say that they were not aware of any such law.
Since the wedding has been called off, both the families have not been meeting anyone and have been keeping a distance from media persons.
On the condition of anonymity, family members from both sides said, “the families didn’t have any objection to the marriage. Since both the groom and the bride are adults, they have the right to the decisions in their lives.”
“We are willing to wait until they get the magistrate's permission and will ensure that the wedding takes place,” both the families added.
The date of marriage was fixed a month before the new law is passed. If I had known about the new law, I would have filed an application for permission to marry before the District Magistrate.Farhan, groom.
Complaint By Hindu Mahasabha
The police had previously said that they acted upon the complaint filed by a religious organisation. However, they have since changed their stance and said that they have taken cognizance of the matter themselves. However, an application from the Uttar Pradesh unit of the Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha asking the Para police to stop the marriage has been obtained by The Quint.
The letter was written by the district president of Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha, Brijesh Kumar Shukla, to the Para Police Station. The letter also mentions the date and place of marriage with the name of the bride's father.
The Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police (South) Suresh Chandra Rawat, however, said that they received information that two people from two different communities were getting married. Following which, the families were summoned to the police station and were told about the UP Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Ordinance, 2020.
The families have to now seek permission from the District Magistrate before taking the next step. However, the police have not told if Farhan and Naina’s marriage would have been illegal under the new ordinance.
Based on the wedding schedule, the couple was supposed to get married according to the Hindu rituals first and then according to the Muslim rituals in Para area in the outskirts of the capital city of Lucknow.
Things turned sour when the police crashed the wedding ceremony and asked to stop the wedding and summoned the boy and girl’s families to the police station.
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