To re-establish amity among the two communities after the lynching incident in Bisada village in Dadri, some prominent members of the Hindu community have taken the initiative of arranging the wedding festivities of two sisters from the Muslim community in the village on Sunday.
The wedding of Resham and Zaitoon is scheduled for October 11. The sensitive situation prevalent in the area, after the lynching of 50-year-old Mohammed Ikhlaq over allegations of beef consumption, made the brides’ families fear that their in-laws might not visit the village.
The girls’ father Mohammad Hakeemu said, “Grooms from nearby villages Payawali and Sadullapur will visit our village for the wedding ceremony. People from every corner of the village are coming to help. I pray to Allah that the weddings are conducted peacefully.”
“Fearing an untoward incident, my daughters left the village on the same night Ikhlaq was killed. They are at my sister’s house in Ghaziabad and will return on the day of the wedding,” he said.
Villagers said they have arranged everything for the wedding. All the wedding expenditure is being borne by the villagers, who contributed voluntarily.
“We are taking care of everything. We have arranged food for around 1,200 people who will attend the function on Sunday. These girls are like our daughters. We are with the Muslim community like we were earlier. Nothing has changed for us,” said Sanjay Rana, village headman.
However, while the caterer is busy preparing dishes like rasgullas, butter paneer, jalebi, rice, chole and chapattis for the wedding, non-vegetarian items are not on the menu.
Asked about it, Hakeemu said, “I don’t have any issue with the menu. It has been prepared with my consent. I don’t want any rift with the villagers over the use or consumption of any non-vegetarian item.”
Sitting besides the caterer and supervising the preparation of sweets, senior village resident HK Sharma said they have requested senior police officers to keep uniformed policemen with guns at a distance from the wedding venue as their presence might make visitors uncomfortable.
Earlier, the grooms’ families had refused to come to Bisada due to the police presence and communal tension. However, members of the village’s Hindu community visited the grooms’ houses and convinced them to go ahead with the wedding on the scheduled date.
Sanjay Singh, Superintendent of Police (rural), said, “We have agreed to the villagers’ demand and police personnel deployed at the venue will be in plainclothes. We hope the ceremony brings both communities closer.”