Bajrang Dal, police stop minor girl's wedding at church in MP; 10 held

Satna (MP): Police and Bajrang Dal activists entered a church in Satna and stopped the wedding of a Hindu minor girl and a boy who had allegedly converted to Christianity four years ago.

The incident took place on Wednesday following which ten persons were arrested, police said on Thursday.

Following a complaint by Bajrang Dal in Kolgawan Police Station, a police team along with Bajrang Dal activists entered the 'Church of God' and stopped the wedding ceremony which was being solemnised by a pastor.

City Superintendent of Police (CSP), Sitaram Yadav said the girl was a Hindu and according to her certificate she was 10 days short of turning 18. "We have arrested 10 persons in this regard including the pastor, Sam Samuel and the groom," the SP said.

The police action came after a complaint by MP Backward Class Commission Member, Laxmi Yadav and Bajrang Dal. Police said the couple had claimed that they had converted to Christianity but failed to inform the police about it which is mandatory under law.

Yadav said it was a small church and large number of people gathered at the spot at the time of the incident. The CSP said that they got suspicious after interacting with the girl, and one of her close relatives also opposed their marriage.

The accused persons were arrested under IPC section 295 (a), Section 3/4 of Religious Conversion Act and section 14 of the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, the CSP said. They were produced in a local court which has granted them bail, he added.

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