Police have stopped a marriage ceremony between a Hindu girl and Muslim boy in Lucknow, citing the newly passed Uttar Pradesh Vidhi Virudh Dharma Samparivartan Pratishedh Adyadesh 2020 after receiving complaints from a Hindu outfit.
Though the wedding was going to be performed with the consent of both the families on Wednesday in Lucknow’s Para area, the festivities were interrupted minutes before the ceremony was to begin.
A police team reached the spot and asked both the parties to accompany them to the local police station. They have been asked to seek clearance from the Lucknow district magistrate first before solemnising the wedding, the police added.
Para Police Station SHO Triloki Singh told The Indian Express: “The family of the girl is Hindu and the boy’s family is Muslim. Both of them were getting married with each other’s consent and there was no coercion of any type. Some representatives of Hindu Yuva Vahini objected to the wedding and we stopped the wedding and told them that under the new conversion law, you can only get married if you have notified the District Magistrate for the specified period of time.”
Asked if either side intended to change their religion, the SHO said: “The Muslim youth wanted to become Hindu and get married. They were getting married according to Hindu rituals.”
The families of the 22-year-old bride and 24-year-old groom have agreed to wait for the approval from the magistrate before the marriage.
Under the “love jihad” law passed by the Yogi Adityanath government, a marriage will be declared shunya or null and void if the “sole intention” was to “change a girl’s religion”.
The law also provides for a jail term of 1-5 years with Rs 15,000 penalty for forceful religious conversion. For conversions of minors & women of SC/SC community, there will be jail term of 3-10 years with Rs 25,000 penalty.