The Daughter of an Indian lawmaker from the State of Uttar Pradesh has claimed in a video clip that her life is at risk and that her father has hired goons to harm her after she married a person from a different caste against the will of her parents.
Rajesh Mishra is a State legislator from Uttar Pradesh’s Bithari Chainpur area.
Sakshi and Ajitesh got married last Thursday (4 July), and since then they have been on the run, fearing that her politician father will have them killed.
“I am married. I am not wearing sindoor, (vermilion on forehead) for fashion. Please ask your goons to back down. I am fed up of hiding from place to place because my life is in danger. Please maintain the peace and continue to peacefully pursue your politics. I want to live happily and independently. If anything happens to me or Abhi (Ajitesh Kumar) or his family, you will be responsible,” said Sakshi in her video in the Hindi language.
Bareily MLA Pappu Bhartaul's daughter released a video appealing to her father to stop opposing her love marriage and call back his goons. The daughter had married a man against her families wishes and fears honour killing. @Uppolice pic.twitter.com/Z2hQcmWyJR— Saurabh Trivedi (@saurabh3vedi) July 10, 2019
Sakshi Mishra has also requested Uttar Pradesh police to provide security for her and her spouse.
According to the Indian newswire PTI, Deputy Inspector General of Police R.K. Pandey has asked his officers to extend security to the couple.
Meanwhile, Sakshi’s father Rajesh Mishra has denied his daughter’s allegations. While talking to a Hindi news channel, he said, 'The charges levelled by my daughter are wrong. I have not threatened her.'
Traditionally, most families in India prefer that their children marry within the same caste or religion.
The Caste system in India is the longest surviving social hierarchy in the world. It restricts social interactions and bars inter-caste marriages, though 'untouchable' status has been abolished in the country since 1950. Socially underprivileged communities are still shunned for using the same wells to draw water in rural India and drinking from the same cups in tea stalls, they also face the segregation of their homes in villages. Their children are frequently forced to sit separately in schools, in what is known as “hidden apartheid”.
There have been several incidents when couples have been killed for marrying outside their castes in the name of preserving the “honour” of a family. Such “honour killings' have been reported in several states across the country.