Asif Iqbal and Ranu Kulsreshtha are co-founders of Dhanak, an organisation that helps interfaith and inter-caste couples register their marriage through Special Marriage Act (SMA), 1954. Members of Dhanak explain how the SMA, which allows Indians to marry irrespective of religious differences, has certain provisions that can endanger the privacy and safety of couples who are often already targets of self-proclaimed moral brigades.
Dhanak, whose network includes nearly 800 interfaith couples, assumes greater relevance in India’s current political climate where inter-faith couples are harassed in the name of ‘love-jihad’.
By Moniza Hafizee
We are entering the third week of our campaign – BAAT KIJIYE SAATH DIJIYE
As we mentioned at the beginning of our campaign; this campaign is primarily targeted towards parents. To help them realize the importance of holding a dialogue with their adult children, respecting their choices and recognizing their rights as adults.
While we counsel youngsters and help them navigate through the complex and often intimidating judicial system, weak law enforcement, and community/family emotional threats; we have established that parents need to be made aware of their adult childrens’ rights –
Adults Right to Choose their partner.
This aspect is severly lacking in our society. The parents emotional abuse and scare tactics take a terrible toll. It is overpowering enough that many children give into their parents whims at the expense of letting go of their own dreams and desires. Many end in a Forced Marriage or worse, sometimes a victim of an Honour based Crime.
While this is a campaign, our work of awareness on this matter, persists among our other commitments.
Thank you for keeping up with us. Your input/feedback is not only welcome, but important to us. So please, take a moment to ponder, ask questions and spread our message.