HindustanTimes Sat,27 Dec 2014

Love without borders: Odisha girl elopes with Pakistani Facebook friend

Priya Ranjan Sahu, Hindustan Times  Bhubaneswar, May 30, 2014
First Published: 21:11 IST(30/5/2014) | Last Updated: 21:39 IST(30/5/2014)
Police in Odisha's Balangir district have started investigations to trace a girl who is said to have crossed over to Pakistan and married her Facebook friend.
The family of the girl filed a missing person complaint after Pakistani and international media reported about her elopement.
"We have started an investigation and looking at all angles. We are probing whether she has went to Pakistan," Balangir inspector in-charge Tariq Ahmed told HT on Friday.
International media reported three days back that Pratima Sahoo (26) fell in love with Pakistani national Muhammad Mansha (32) after coming in contact with him about a year back through the social networking site.
A fortnight back, she went to Layyah, a district in Punjab province of Pakistan, about 460 km south of Islamabad, converted to Islam and got married to Mansha in a local mosque.
She reportedly changed her name to Maryam.
"I am extremely happy to find my love. I will apply for Pakistani citizenship at the earliest. I will love to stay with my husband and his parents," she was quoted as saying in the Daily Mail.
Pratima's family had no idea about her whereabouts till her story was highlighted in Pakistani and international media.
"We had no idea that Pratima had gone to Pakistan," her brother Pramod Sahoo said.
Pratima was associated with a spiritual order (Prajapita Brahmakumari) for the past 10 years. She mostly stayed in its ashram in Balangir town.
The ashram's head Premlata Jena said she was not aware about Pratima's dalliance with the social networking site or her friend.

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