The people of Kodaikanal are not quite happy with Irom Sharmila's decision to marry her British partner Desmond Coutinho. The human rights activist has been facing opposition for a while now.
There are a slew of petitions opposing her marriage proposal to the British national. The human rights activist said that three witnesses for the inter-religious marriage have been threatened too.
But she is all set to tie the knot on August 16.
Meanwhile, expressing solidarity with documentary film maker Divya Bharathi — who has been facing the ire of a caste group for her latest work on manual scavenging titled Kakkoos (toilet) — she has invited him to be her bridesmaid.
The Hindu Makkal Katchi had filed a petition in Kodaikanal against Irom's proposed wedding on Friday. The Newsminute reports that the organisation says that allowing Irom to stay and get married in the hill station would ruin the peace and tranquility of the city.
Irom had moved to Kodaikanal after she suffered a crushing defeat in the Manipur Assembly elections this year.
"I don't feel threatened at present and do not fear life and death. I am ready to make sacrifices for the sake of humanity,'' Irom said at a media gathering.
Divya has been facing threats after she released her film, "Kakkoos" (toilet), on manual scavenging.
The film highlights the failure to implement the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act 2013. In the film, she had equated US President Abraham Lincoln's move to end slavery in the 19th century with the 2013 Act, which fulfills the promise made by Dr Ambedkar to abolish untouchability.
The Madurai police has registered a case for inciting violence and hatred among communities after a complainant alleged that the film portrays their tribe in poor light by showing them performing manual scavenging for their survival.
"I will stand by Divya; I hope you will do the same. I invite Divya to stand beside me at my wedding next week. At this moment, I cannot think of a finer garland than the end of caste slavery," Irom Sharmila told reporters.
Despite opposition from fringe groups, the 45-year-old said that she will continue to live in Kodaikanal.
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