Two Indian women in their early 20s have shocked their families by running away to get married.
The couple, aged 24 and 22, lived in a village near Awagarh in the northern province of Uttar Pradesh. They have been involved for more than a year but their families refused to accept the relationship.
The father of the younger woman told The Times of India:
“My youngest daughter among eight children, who was the most obedient, wants to marry another girl. Under the influence of our neighbour’s daughter … she has eloped.”
The couple now live in the nearby town of Fariha with a relative of the older woman and hope to marry in a courtroom ceremony away from the disapproval of their parents and the community back in Basundara. The father admitted that they had been pursued by “our entire family and neighbourhood and urged to break off the relationship “which is against the nature’s law [sic].”
But the girls ignored them, even when the family filed a complaint at the local police station and officers tried to persuade the couple to end the relationship. They threatened to kill themselves if they weren’t allowed to marry.
The angry father complained:
“I don’t understand how the two can live in a society where same-sex marriage is a taboo. It’s a deviant behaviour. The panchayat [council] can throw them out of village.”
The Times of India secured a telephone interview with the runaway couple. They told the paper’s reporter:
“We like each other and just want to live together. Nothing can do apart us [sic].”
Photo by sanchantr via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence.