Tamil Nadu: Wedding in the times of coronavirus

Tamil Nadu: Wedding in the times of COVID-19

32-year-old Marimuthu, a carpenter by profession, and 26-year-old Mariammal had been waiting for March 26 – the day fixed for their long-due marriage. (DH Photo)

32-year-old Marimuthu, a carpenter by profession, and 26-year-old Mariammal had been waiting for March 26 – the day fixed for their long-due marriage. Having lost their parents long back, Marimuthu and Mariammal were being supported by their relatives who fixed their marriage after much difficulty.

As COVID-19 outspread locked down the entire globe, Madurai was no exception. Since Tuesday when the entire country came under curfew, the duo faced several anxious moments till Thursday morning when Marimuthu finally tied the knot with Mariammal at a new venue – a road-side temple in Madurai, 460 kms from here.

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The wedding was to happen at Lord Shiva Temple in Anna Nagar area, but the entire locality was closed to the public as a 54-year-old man who died on Wednesday after testing positive for coronavirus lived in the area. More so, the temple was also closed due to restrictions.

Not wanting to miss the muhurtham and having spent nearly Rs 2 lakh on the wedding, the families knocked at the doors of the police asking them to allow the marriage. With police ruling out permission, Marimuthu and Mariammal exchanged wedding vows at the road-side temple which has only one idol in the presence of close family members who numbered just 16 all wearing protective masks.

Read: Coronavirus India update: State-wise total number of confirmed cases

“It has been quite a struggle to find a bride for my brother and the same for Mariammal. And since both of them don’t have parents to support them, the search went on for years. We didn’t want to miss the muhurtham and went ahead with the marriage,” one of Marimuthu’s relatives told DH.

The carpenter had invited nearly 150 people for his wedding and had ordered food for 200 people. “We packed as many packets we could and delivered them to relatives. The remaining, which was a major part of the food, was sent to an orphanage and an old age home in the city,” the relative said.

The police didn’t allow them even to go near the temple as the area is being sanitized on a regular basis since at least Two Thai nationals, who are quarantined at a hospital in Perundurai in Erode district, frequented the mosque in the area.

“Since we also know that coronavirus is a highly contagious disease, we didn’t press. Anyways, the families are just happy that Marimuthu and Mariammal are a couple now,” the relative added.

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