With the Assembly elections in Jharkhand in near future, the marriage of National Shooter and Rifle Gold medalist, Tara Sahdeo, is being used to rattle Jharkhand and if possible the entire India.
Last week, Tara Sahdeo, had alleged that she was tortured to change her religion to Islam by a Muslim man who claimed he was a Hindu and married her. In her police complaint, Sahdeo claimed she got married in June this year to a person named Ranjit Kohli. She said the marriage was solemnised as per Hindu rituals. However, during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, when people invited her husband for Iftar, she came to know that her husband’s name was Rakibul Hussain. She allegedly found the name on the invitation cards to the Iftar.
After this, she alleges that his Husband and 20 other people forced her to change her religion. When she refused, she was allegedly beaten up and was threatened with dire consequences if she told anyone about the conversion. She was kept in confinement, and only when she sent a message to her family members, she was rescued.
Thus Tara Sahdeo needed the Iftar Card to find out the religious identity of her husband. How she knew, the 20 other people coercing her to convert, were muslims? They were wearing small muslim cap on their heads ! Silly.
Good to see that a humble Iftar Card came to her rescue. Good to hear that her parents came to her rescue. BTW, they would have come even when she had knowingly (out of love) married a muslim. The parents would have lived happily even when for Tara, the marriage would have been : Happily Ever After… (similar to the married life of VJ and anchor Mini Mathur and Kabir Khan).
Similar incidents do take place in other parts of India, where a muslim boy marries a Hindu girl, or a Hindu boy marries a Muslim girl; only difference being they are in love with each other. Interestingly, when decades ago, Dharmendra married Hema Malini, he converted to Islam (also taking a new name Zulfiqar Khan). He had to do that as he was already married, and a Hindu, with a living wife, can’t marry a second time.
Tara Sahdeo like stories may look ‘stories’ to some ; but ever since May 16,2014, TV channels and newspapers of Hindi Heartland have started giving these stories a preference. Who knows, which of these conversion reports can touch some deep chord in country’s psyche !
To conclude, both Jharkhand Women’s Commission chairperson Mahua Manjhi and Jharkhand Government have given Tara Sahdeo assurance of a proper investigation.
In the mean time, some right-wing organisations have already termed the story as ‘Love Jihad’ involving a national-level shooter. And they have began their angry protests with damaging public property. Lets hope, the investigation doesn’t point to Tara Sahdeo as a bitter wife or a girl who later lamented about why she didn’t pay heed to her parents before this marriage. Else, this hastily coined term Love Jihad will prove wrong.