Delhi has been under the scanner of communal violence this week in the Northeast area of the the capital city. Because of the violence and tensioning situation, the family of a young Hindu woman living in a Muslim-majority area was forced to cancel her wedding.
23-year-old Savitri Prasad said she was weeping in her home as violent mobs battled outside on Tuesday, which was to have been her wedding day.
But Savitri’s father then organised the wedding for the following day, saying his Muslim neighbours were family and he was comforted by their presence.
The bride was quoted as saying in a report, “My Muslim brothers are protecting me today.”
The rituals took place at Savitri’s home, a small brick building in a narrow alley in the Chand Bagh district. Steps away, the main street looked like a war zone, with cars and shops vandalised and the area littered with rocks used in pitched battles between mobs on both sides.
Narrating the oordeal, on Monday evening, the day Savitri was to have henna applied on her hands in a pre-wedding ritual, but the violence was already going on in the area
“We could hear a lot of commotion outside, but I had the henna applied, hoping things would be better next day,” she said. Instead, they got worse.
Her father told the groom and his family it was too dangerous to come to the house.
Neighbours gathered to offer blessings as the groom arrived and the wedding rituals took place, with a Hindu priest reciting holy verses and the groom and bride taking the rounds of a small pyre set up inside the house.
“We live peacefully with our Hindu brothers,” said Aamir Malik, who was standing guard with several other men outside the home. “We are everything for them. It’s been like that. We are here for them.
“Today, none of our relatives could attend my daughter’s wedding,” said Bhoday Prasad. “But our Muslim neighbours are here. They are our family.”