Bihar: Muslim couple exchange wedding vows in Shiva temple
Amid nationwide surge in religious intolerance, Mohammad Sohan, 25, and Nuresha Khatun, who is five years younger to the groom, married in a Shiva temple at Bhimnagar village of this northeast Bihar district bordering Nepal.india Updated: Oct 25, 2016 15:20 IST
The two had been in love, but fear of society led them to elope. Shortly afterwards, the young Muslim couple returned to their village, where elders held their wedding — at a Hindu shrine.
Amid nationwide surge in religious intolerance, Mohammad Sohan, 25, and Nuresha Khatun, who is five years younger to the groom, married in a Shiva temple at Bhimnagar village of Supaul district in northeast Bihar bordering Nepal.
The nikah last weekend was attended by hundreds of people from Hindu and Muslim communities. Maulvi Mohammad Jaffar, who read out kalma to the couple, said the decision was taken “to make people realise that one thing which always wins is love”.
Added panchayat head Sudhir Kumar Singh, who was behind this organising the marriage with a difference: “It’s a nikah that was solemnised at the verandah of Shiva temple. We hope this will send a strong message to those who are spreading hatred among communities in the world.”
Both Sohan and Nuresha, who are natives of Bhimnagar panchayat along the Indo-Nepal border, were in love for over five years. During the Dussehra festival, they eloped to Delhi travelling no less than 1,200 km, only to return to their village on Friday.
Soon after, local people convened a panchayat, which was attended by members of both the communities. They “unanimously” decided to solemnise the pair’s nikah at the Lord Shiva temple in Bhimnagar, 240 km from state capital Patna.
The Maulvi noted that it was “really wonderful” to see a nikah being performed in a mandir. “I don’t know whether this will succeed in spreading worldwide the message of love. But I can say this will certainly strengthen our unity here,” he said.
A beaming Nuresha said the couple’s love has “finally won”.
“We will return to the temple every year to celebrate our marriage anniversary,” she added.