CHENNAI: A couple in has been ostracized for marrying outside their caste in Tamil Nadu, three years after the marriage following controversy and violence after a similar inter-caste marriage in the state.
S Sudha, a dalit, married a vanniyar man in April 2010 at Kadaiyampatti village in Dharmapuri district. She has now approached the Madras high court saying that the family, including her in-laws have been excommunicated and sought protection from ‘community leaders’.
Justice K K Sasidharan directed the Dharmapuri district administration to provide police protection to Sudha and her family members, and ensure that they lived peacefully without any threat or attack.
Justice Sasidharan said, “This petition projects a sorry state of affairs in Tamil Nadu, and Dharmapuri district in particular. The petitioner (Sudha) had a love affair with a man of another community resulting in their marriage. She now wants to live in the village along with her in-laws. In a matter of this nature, the court has to strike a balance between the right of the petitioner to live in the village and the need to preserve peace and tranquility in the area.”
Sudha said that after the Divya-Elavarasan episode, violence broke out in Dharmapuri district. She claimed that members of the vanniyar community in the village boycotted her family. Life became so miserable that she was forced to leave the village, she said, adding that 21 local leaders conducted a katta panchayat (kangaroo court) and excommunicated her and the family. She wanted police protection to live in the village.
The government lawyer told the court that police have been providing protection to her and that two sub-inspectors and eight constables have been posted for their protection.
Justice Sasidharan asked the Dharmapuri superintendent of police to ensure that Sudha’s family was able to live peacefully in the village, and was allowed to use the village well and other common amenities without any problem.