Haryana panchayat directs couple to annul marriage

Rohtak, May 18 (Calcutta Tube) In another gotra (ancestral lineage) row in this Haryana district, the village panchayat (council) of a Scheduled Caste (SC) community has directed a newly married couple to annul their marriage or leave the village within 10 days.

The panchayat officials at Samain village have threatened to forcibly oust the groom’s family from the village if the couple does not follow this diktat.

Kulwant Maidal, a resident of Samain village, married Sushila Badgujjar, a resident of Dadula village in Panipat district May 16.

‘Kulwant’s family has violated our traditions by marrying their son with a girl from Bahamnia gotra. No boy from our village can marry a girl belonging to Bahamnia gotra as they are just like our sisters as per our age-old customs,’ said a panchayat member here Tuesday.

However, the couple has refused to follow this verdict of the panchayat.

‘This is an illogical verdict of the panchayat and we will not annul our marriage at any cost. If they try to threaten us or pressurize our family members, then we will approach police seeking protection from them,’ Kulwant said.

In the meantime, taking cognizance of this verdict, local police officials also come to the village Tuesday to talk to the panchayat members. Police have directed them to maintain law and order situation in the village.

Haryana panchayats are notorious for giving such diktats for marriages solemnised within the same clan.

Haryana khap panchayats (community councils) are demanding an amendment in the Hindu Marriage Act and a complete ban on marriages within the same gotra or ancestral lineage.

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