The couple's parents support their wedding

A day before Hindu-Muslim couples wedding caste group organizes bandh in Mandya
news Saturday, April 16, 2016 - 12:45

Mandya Police have arrested two people for arson during a bandh organized by a caste group a day before an inter-faith couple is due to get married.

Mandya SP Sudheer Kumar Reddy told The News Minute that the Swabhimani Vokkaligara Sene, a caste group opposed the wedding of a Vokkaliga woman and a Muslim man, had called for a complete bandh in the district on April 16.

The two arrested men had set fire to a tyre near Kalikamba temple in Mandya town. Police are yet to ascertain whether the pair belonged to any group. Watch the video here:

 

"No other disruptions have occurred so far. The markets and shops are working as usual. However, security is stepped up in a few sensitive areas in the town," he said. 

Right-wing groups and caste groups have been protesting against the wedding of N. Ashitha and Shakeel Ahamed in Mysuru on April 17.

The nature of their objection, however, it unclear. The people leading the protest variously claim that Ashita and Shakeel’s wedding was a case of love jihad; that they have no objection to this particular wedding, but that they are protesting to create awareness about "love jihad". In both cases however, there appears to be some objection to a Vokkaliga woman marrying a Muslim man.

CT Manjunath, a member of the BJP and a former state convener of the Bajrang Dal, claimed that Ashitha was being taken to Chamrajnagara district to study the Quran, which is the process to convert the girl's religions. 

"We are not against this marriage, but we don't want the girl to convert her religion. We heard that she has already changed her name. Why can't the boy become a Hindu or better still let them both practice their religions even after marriage," he said.

He also claimed that ‘love jihad’ frequently occurred: "Like Ashitha, girls belonging to the Vokkaliga community have been victims of love jihad in last few years," he added. In an earlier interview, he had claimed that 70 percent of the women admitted to NIMHANS were victims of ‘love jihad’.

Manjunath and other protesters will submit a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner opposing the wedding. He claimed that even Mandya MP and JD(S) leader CS Putturaju, who won with Vokkaliga community's support, had turned his back on them by supporting the district administration's decision to stop the bandh.

Reddy said: "We have given full security to the families so that there is no trouble when they go to Mysuru for the wedding."

The matter came to light when the group protested outside Ashita’s house earlier this week, and lecturer him about ‘love jihad’ on Tuesday. 

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