Amid deafening sounds of mortar explosions and machine gun fire along the Indo-Pak border in Jammu and Kashmir, a young man from Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) crossed the ‘live’ border and married a girl in Rajouri district.
Mohammed Arif, the 33-year-old son of Hassan Mohammed of Mirpur in PoK, reached Rajouri on the Carvan-e-Aman (peace bus) on Monday to tie the knot.
Arif crossed the Line of Control on a valid travel permit aboard the bus via Chakan-da-Bagh in Poonch district and on Tuesday, he married his uncle’s daughter Kaja Sana in Dhani Dhar area of Rajouri.
The trans-LoC peace bus and trade between J&K and PoK -- a brainchild of late chief minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed -- were initiated in October 2008 after getting a nod by the then-UPA government and Pakistan to enable divided families to meet each other.
Arif has come on a travel permit of two weeks.
“Arif married Kajal Sana, daughter of Dil Mohammed from Dhanni Dar. Dil Mohammed’s brother had crossed over to PoK in 1965 and settled there. The legal formalities are being completed,” said a resident of Rajouri.
Rajouri deputy commissioner Shabir Ahmed Bhat said, “it’s a positive development amid firing and shelling on the border”.
“There are several families on either side of the border, which have blood relations in both parts of Kashmir,” he added.
A senior police officer said law does not disallow such marriages and PoK is a part of India, which is under illegal occupation of Pakistan. The family, however, refused to get the couple’s photographs clicked.