In a rare wedding ceremony, a Hindu couple were married in a simple ceremony, following all Hindu traditions, inside a mosque in Kerala on Sunday.
The marriage, hosted by the Cheruvally Muslim Jamaat mosque near Alappuzha, was held in front of a lighted traditional lamp with guests from both the communities participating. A small mandap was set up inside the mosque for the wedding. The wedding muhurtham was at 12.15 pm and a large crowd thronged the mosque to witness the wedding and bless the couple.
The bride Anju and the groom Sarath exchanged garlands and performed rituals in the presence of a Hindy priest at the mosque premises, which was decked up for the rare occasion signifying communal amity.
Anju lost her father last year when he died of a heart attack. She is the eldest of the three daughters.
Her mother Bindu, who was in a financial crisis following her husband's death, had approached the mosque committee for help and they readily agreed. Not only did the mosque committee agree to give money for the wedding, they also provided space to conduct the wedding.
The mosque committee also gifted 10 sovereigns of gold and Rs 2 lakh to the bride as a wedding gift.
The marriage was held as per Hindu rituals. Instead of biriyani, a vegetarian sadya was also served at the premises. Food for around 1,000 people was also arranged, Nujumudeen Alummoottil, secretary of Cheruvally Jamaat committee, said.
"I never thought the wedding would happen considering the circumstances but it did. We are thankful to everyone," newly-wed Sharath told the media.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan took to Facebook to congragulate the young couple and said the state has always upheld and showcased such beautiful examples of religious harmony. "Kerala has always upheld beautiful examples of religious harmony. What has been written in Cheravally today is the latest chapter in this legacy," he wrote, sharing a photograph of the wedding.
"At a time when efforts are being made to separate people in the name of religion, these people are encouraging society to remove such barriers" Pinarayi said, adding, "Kerala is one and we will stay united."
The CM conveyed his wishes to the couple, their families and the mosque committee.
(With inputs from PTI)