Retired Odisha Telecom Officer’s Family Ostracised Because Daughter Married Outside Caste
Sambalpur: The fact that inter-caste marriages are still taboo in our country is a harsh reality. One of the latest victims is Laxmana Meher of Battarma and his family, who are facing social ostracisation because his daughter got married to a Brahmin boy last year.
Laxmana Meher, a retired telecom officer of Battarma within Melchhamunda police limits in Bargarh district, belongs to the Kuli Meher community. Laxmana’s daughter, who has completed her MTech and is working as a software engineer, got married to a Brahmin boy in January last year, sources said.
“No one from the community is inviting my family to any social function since her marriage. I was also not allowed to see my elder brother and sister-in-law who died last year,” alleged Laxmana.
What is more, he could not attend his nephew’s wedding ceremony last year. His elder brother feared that his family will land in trouble if he went to the wedding ceremony. Laxmana’s is not the only case. He claims community leaders have ostracised several other families over inter-caste marriage. “It is really surprising that marrying outside the caste boundaries is still considered a taboo in the society. My family is going through severe mental pressure due to the ostracism,” he added.
Laxmana even submitted a petition to the Bargarh Collector and SP and lodged a complaint with Melchhamunda police in this connection. “We have received the petition. The matter will be resolved in a peace meeting. We have already contacted the president and secretary of the community and the meeting will be held shortly, “said Manaswani Thakur, inspector in-charge of Melchhamunda police station.
While Melchhamunda IIC Manaswini Thakur did not respond to calls, the secretary of Kuli Meher community Chitta Ranjan Meher, refuted the allegations and said Laxmana’s family has not been ostracised. “The community is following its age-old tradition. As per the tradition, community members do not invite families, which have accepted inter-caste marriage, to any rituals,” he added.