Punjab village bans love marriage. Which era is this, again?
The Chankoian Khurd village in Ludhiana's Doraha block banned love marriages after two neighboring youngsters got married. As a part of the diktat, the ones opting for love marriage will be ostracized from the village, and so will those talking to the couple, ruled the gram panchayat. Taking the draconian resolution further, village shopkeepers have been asked to not entertain such couples.
Resolution pasted at local bus stop among other places
"If any boy or girl gets married of their own accord, the village will socially boycott them. If any family member keeps ties, they too shall be boycotted," read the letter which was pasted at a local bus stop and some meters away from 'shunned' couple's house.
Seniors of village defend decision
An officiating Panch, Hakam Singh said the villagers collectively arrived at the decision and added love marriages brought a bad name to the village. "The girl went against her family's wishes and married a boy from another caste. We cannot allow such people in the village and so have decided to punish them socially as an example for other youngsters," he said.
Ironically, girl's grandfather happy with the resolution
Reportedly, the girl's grandfather Shingara Singh welcomed the resolution. He and his family members brought the matter to panchayat's notice. The boy's grandfather, who is terminally ill, said the girl's family asked her to return but she refused them. The girl has studied till Class 12th and boy till Class 6th. His family has boring tubewells' business.
Panchayat doesn't hold any legal ground
Courtesy a March order of the Supreme Court, khap panchayats and panchayats have no rights to interfere in the marriages of couples. The SC also issued directives to prevent honor killings. Advocate Sahil Sharma told TOI, passing such a resolution violated the constitution. A Ludhiana police officer said, "If any couple faces ostracism and complains to us, we will take action."