A makeshift shed in front of the 20-foot-high Vinayaka idol, installed by the activists of Shiv Sena at Nesavalar Colony in Tirupur to mark Vinayaga Chathurthi, turned into a marriage venue of a destitute couple, here on Wednesday.
The activists of the outfit, known for their staunch opposition and strong protests against Valentine’s day celebrations, spotted a couple near the idol. Subsequently, they held enquiries with them and after learning about their problem decided to conduct their marriage.
Saravanan, district president of Shiv Sena, said, “The couple were found moving near Pichampalayam. When questioned they said they eloped from their houses in Erode. We conducted an enquiry and found that they have attained the necessary age under the law to get married. So, we decided to conduct their marriage.”
Shankar, a daily wage earner, and Nithya, both residents of Kasiyur in Erode, had been in love for the past seven years. However, parents of Nithya were opposed to the relationship as Shankar came from a poor family. Meanwhile, Nithya’s parents arranged marriage for her and were pressurising her to accept the alliance. But, Nithya eloped with Shankar recently and both reached Tirupur, where they faced problems owing to the limited resources at their disposal and were wandering aimlessly when the activists spotted them.
After learning about their plight, the activists decided to marry off the couple to make the Chathurthi celebrations even grander.
The marriage was conducted in front of the idol at the makeshift shed erected for the Chathurthi celebrations as per Hindu rituals.
Meanwhile, the newly-wed couple petitioned the All Women Police Station, here seeking protection. Parents of the couple were informed and Shankar’s parents came and took the couple home.
When asked about the sudden reversal of stand on love marriages, Saravanan said that they respected love and were not opposed to it. “We oppose only the indecency shown by couples in public place during Valentine’s Day. We will continue to oppose such celebrations that are not part of our culture, but will never back away from supporting genuine lovers.”