New twist in Meerut ‘love jihad’ case
Father: “Let her marry Kaleem if she loves him”
In a latest twist in the alleged “love jihad” case in Meerut, the father of the girl at the centre of the controversy has said she can marry the Muslim youth she claims to love.
Narendra Tyagi, the father of the girl and a resident of Sarava village just a few kilometres away from Meerut, told The Hindu on phone, “She is a grown up girl now. Who are we to force her? Even if it is a case of ‘love jihad’ she can marry Kaleem if she loves him. It is ok if she would be happy that way”.
The statement by the 52-year-old Mr. Tyagi comes two days after his daughter ran away from her family and claimed that her family had forced her to give false statements of gang-rape and forcible conversion against her Muslim lover and few other members of Minority community.
The final permission, though coupled with indifference in tone and tenor and simultaneous disowning of his daughter too, came from the father after this correspondent confronted him with her daughter’s unofficial statements about her love for Kaleem, a Muslim youth of the neighbouring village of Uldhan. She had profusely accepted her love for him before the media and police personnel while crying after running away from her family on Sunday.
“ I don’t care about her coming here anymore. I have disowned her. But If she is happy getting married to him, let it be,” added the father of the girl who claimed to have a “harrowing” experience over the controversy over her alleged relationship with the Muslim youth, since the day she ran away with him on July 23.
Importantly, he blamed political parties for too much “hungama” over the issue through which the personal life of his daughter became a public concern.
“ We are her parents. We don’t want to publicise her personal life. It is the political parties which approached us and created a controversy in order to draw mileage out of this issue,” he told The Hindu.
But Mr. Tyagi makes it a point that his daughter should withdraw the case of assault and threatening to murder against him and his wife. The girl, who is staying in a government shelter house for women in Meerut city, had registered the case alleging that her parents were planning to kill her.
“She should not punish us for wanting good for her. She should withdraw her complaint against us because we won’t harm her at all,” added Mr. Tyagi, who has a small plot of farming land to earn his livelihood.
Despite the father’s grudging permission to the daughter to marry the Muslim youth, it is unlikely to be an easy thing for him or his daughter in the face of strong resistance from the Hindutva groups.
The members of Hindutva groups like Meerut Bahan Beti Bachao Andolan, however, had reached Mr. Tyagi’s house in Sarava, asking him not to change his stand over her daughter being lured by a ‘love jihadi Muslim’.
Ajay Tyagi the chief of the Hindutva outfit said that he won’t allow a Hindu girl to marry a Muslim man. “ It is a conspiracy hatched at a big level. But let me tell you that we won’t allow the girl (Mr. Tyagi’s daughter) to marry that ‘love jihadi’,” he told The Hindu on phone.
“We are trying to convince Tyagi ji not to think like that. No body can harm him by any complaint because she is her daughter and also our izzat. It is a matter of Hindu asmita,” reinforced the chief of the right wing outfit.
He talked about the case as a text book instance of “love jihad” which he claimed is an ‘’Islamist conspiracy’’ to lure Hindu girls, convert them and thereby “emasculate” Hindu society.