Man cries at wedding held at gun-point

‘Bride’s’ family kidnapped him from another wedding and forced him to marry their daughter

Patna: A man, who was kidnapped so he could be forcibly married off, cried bitterly as women performed wedding rituals overseen by an array of guns to his head.

These nuptials are known in local parlance as ‘Pakadua Vivah’ or forcible marriage. Families who want to get well-settled grooms for their daughters, but cannot meet the demands of dowry abduct boys.

Vinod Kumar, a junior engineer with Bokaro Steel Plant, a Government of India enterprise, had gone to attend the wedding of his friend in Nalanda district recently when he was kidnapped by a group of men.

Kumar was dragged to the wedding rituals and thrashed there. As he wailed, women used their saris to wipe his tears.

“We are only performing your wedding, not hanging you. Why are you crying loudly? Shut up,” the girl’s relative is heard telling the groom in a video.

Kumar said he didn’t cooperate because he hadn’t got the consent of his parents. They then held guns to his temple.

“They (the girl’s family) befriended me during the wedding and asked me to step out. They kidnapped me and took me to a home where I was forced to put vermillion in the hair of a girl. I had never seen her and I don’t know who she is,” Kumar said.

Based on Kumar’s written complaint, police have ordered an investigation into the incident, which took place in Mokama area of Patna district. “We have asked an official to investigate and act against the guilty. Action will be taken after the probe,” Patna’s senior superintendent of police Manu Maharaj said.

The incidents of ‘forcible marriages’ are quite common in Bihar. According to an official report, a total of 2,877 incidents of kidnapping for marriages were reported in 2016, 3,001 incidents in 2015, 2,533 in 2014 and 2,922 in 2013. The districts notorious for such marriages include Begusarai, Patna, Lakhisarai, Munger, Jehanabad, Gaya, Nawada, Sheikhpura and Arwal.

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