Several events in the past few months have lead us to share our views about inter-faith marriages. Some of the events are Tanishq’s Hindu-Muslim wedding advertisement, the murder of a 21-year-old girl in Haryana on the reason that she refused to love a Muslim boy which lead to the state government’s view to enacting the law referring to Love-Jihad.
Some people support inter-faith marriages for the reason that freedom should be given to individuals to choose their life partner. Some people oppose inter-faith marriages for the reason that people of other religions are using marriage as a tool for conversion by feigning love. It is easy for me to express my opinion, but the hard thing would be to understand the dynamics of that issue. Therefore, first I’ll try to analyse the issue we are dealing with, and after that, I’ll express my opinion regarding the issue.
It has been 74 years since India got independence and we have formulated our constitution where every person is equal before the law and have freedom of choice. Though such rights are given to all of us, we live in a society which is hierarchically segregated based on caste and religion. Caste and religion play a prominent role in the life of every individual and people are not allowed to do anything that goes against the pre-existing rules of their respective caste and religion.
Inter-caste/Inter-religious marriages are matters opposed strongly by all the persons of their respective communities. The reason for that is caste and religion have a pride factor associated with them and followers of a particular religion won’t allow a person of a different religion to be part of their group. They assume that such a marriage would diminish the sanctity of their religion. In a majority of the cases, if a person marries another person of a different religion, then it can automatically lead to social abandonment. In extreme cases, it can also lead to “honour killings”.
Although we are living in the modern era, parents play a prominent role in every aspect of our life. Parents usually take all the important decisions for their child. They won’t allow their child to marry some other person against their wishes. There are two reasons parents oppose an inter-caste/inter-religious marriage:
Now let me express my opinion regarding the issue. We should allow inter-religious marriages as it acts as a medium to harmonise society. But to what extent should one struggle to marry that person? Marrying a person of a different religion is just like revolting against a community for a cause. I am not opposing inter-religious marriages but saying that society is not developed to the extent where it will support that.
Change should happen in society, but it should happen gradually to own that change. It took several years to allow girls in the field of education and employment. Now women are thriving on par with men. Like that, society and our parents will support inter-religious marriages, but we have to wait for that golden era.