UP BJP removes leader who disrupted inter-faith marriage alleging ‘love-jihad’

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In a welcome development, the ruling BJP in Uttar Pradesh has removed its Ghaziabad city unit president Ajay Sharma from the post after he caused disruption in the marriage of a Hindu woman with a Muslim man in the Rajnagar area alleging it was a case of “Love Jihad”.

Ghaziabad
Photo: Sakib Ali/Hindustan Times

Love Jihad is a term frequently used by Hindutva parties when a Muslim man marries a Hindu woman.

A letter by BJP Uttar Pradesh State General Secretary Vidyasagar Sonkar said that his party had removed Sharma from the post and replaced him with the Ghaziabad city unit general secretary Man Singh Goswami.

“I have received the letter from the state head office and will obey the instructions,” Sharma was quoted by PTI.

A large group of BJP workers led by Sharma, and some people belonging to right-wing groups protested outside the marriage venue on 22 December.

The marriage between the man and the woman, who were friends and worked in a multinational company, was later solemnized in a court.

Over 100 workers of the BJP and other Hindu outfits, including dozen-odd leaders, were booked in Ghaziabad on the charge of clashing with police and rioting over the marriage of a Hindu woman with a Muslim man, police said on Saturday.

The case was lodged at midnight Friday by Kavi Nagar police through Sub Inspector Dinesh Sharma under Sections 147, 148, 336, 341, 427, 353 of the Indian Penal Code and Section 7 of the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act.

The accused had allegedly clashed with police earlier in the day in Ghaziabad over the marriage they dubbed as a case of “love jihad” and also staged a sit-in outside the house of the woman’s parents and disrupted traffic.

The woman’s family had organised a wedding reception at their house in Ghaziabad.

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