An Inter-caste Hindu-Muslim wedding took place on Sunday amidst opposition from pro-Hindutva and caste activists. The activists from both the groups claimed that the wedding between 29-year-old Ashitha Babu and 29-year-old Shakeel Ahmed was a case of love Jihad forced by the groom’s parents. The bride Ashitha who belonged to the Vokkaliga community and Shakeel Ahmed were in a relationship for the past 12 years. They went to college together for their MBA course and after being in a relationship for 12 years they decided to get married on April 17, 2016.
The wedding took place in Mysuru unhindered under police protection. The family went ahead to seek the protection from police authorities since the wedding was subjected to objection from the pro-Hindutva groups, Bajrang Dal and the Vokkaligara Sangha. Members of the Bajrang Dal and the Vokkaligara Sangha opposed the wedding despite the fact that the family stated that the wedding was a collective decision by both the families
Prior to the wedding Ashitha converted to Islam and changed her name to Shaista Sultan. Although the relatives of the family were initially taken aback by the decision, they supported the wedding of Shaista and Shakeel later.(ALSO READ: 12-year-old Hindu-Muslim love affair in Karnataka branded as ‘love jihad’ by Sangh Parivar).
The ceremony had a low attendance due to the inter-caste wedding and a lot of opposition by different groups. But subsequently some of the groups also joined the wedding to support the decision made by the family to unite two lovers irrespective if their religion. Post the wedding ceremony a reception was held at the Taj convention Hall in Mysore by the much-in love couple.