Karnataka: Bride housed at relief centre marries Kerala man

MADIKERI: For a few hours over the weekend, festivity pervaded the gloom in flood and landslide-ravaged Madikeri taluk. Hundreds of people housed in Laksminarasimha Kalyana Mantap put their troubles behind them, decked up in the best clothes they could find and celebrating the of , a survivor housed at the relief centre.
Manjula, from Makkandur who had moved to the relief centre after floods and landslides destroyed her home, married Rajish from Kerala at a ceremony at the Omkareshwara temple on Sunday.

Manjula’s family revealed they had not dreamed of such a grand ceremony, especially after the natural calamity the district had witnessed. Members of a number of service organizations, including Madikeri Lion’s Club, Seva Bharati and Daivajna Brahmana Sangha attended the wedding along with hundreds of people from the relief centre.

“This wedding is beyond my wildest imagination,” Manjula said. “I did not expect such a big celebration. No words can express my gratitude to the people of Kodagu.” A resident of Rani Paisari in Makkandur village, life took a turn for the worse for Manjula when she and her family lost all they owned in a massive landslide. They were forced to shift to the relief centre at Laksminarasimha Kalyana Mantap.

Manjula’s wedding had already been fixed for August 26 with Rajish, a resident of Kannur, Kerala, but after the disaster, it was uncertain if the wedding would go through. However, after Manjula’s story was reported in media, a number of donors and social organizations came forward to help. Zameer Ahmed, food and civil supplies minister, contributed Rs 50,000 for the wedding during a visit to Madikeri on Saturday. A woman volunteer chipped in with Rs 25,000, while Sa Ra Mahesh, minister in-charge of the district, promised Rs 50,000. With help and support pouring in, the wedding was arranged at Madikeri on the scheduled date.

On Saturday evening, the relief centre was converted back into a wedding hall with Manjula’s ‘mehendi’ function taking centre stage. The wedding was conducted on Sunday with a huge crowd attending. Apart from family, hundreds of ‘new friends’ from the relief centre attended. A lunch was arranged at Gejje Sankappa Kalyana Mantap, another relief centre.

Manjula’s mother Baby, said, “I am grateful to all who helped make the wedding possible. Her father died when she was just three months old.”Annappa, Manula’s brother, said, “I drove an auto, but after a landslide hit out house, I left the vehicle there and fled with the family to the relief centre. I never thought this wedding would be possible.”

The groom’s father too had died sometime ago, and while his sister Rejina attended the wedding his mother was absent.

ANOTHER WEDDING ON SEPT 12

Kusuma’s wedding has been postponed to September 12 and will be held at a temple in Madikeri, revealed Seva Bharati volunteer Mahesh and Madikeri Lions Club president Damodar. On Thursday, the entire village of Hattihole, led by Kusuma’s parents, had searched through rubble of a landslide for an iron safe in which the parents had kept jewellery purchased for the wedding. The safe was located late in the evening and the jewellery successfully recovered. Minister Zameer Ahmed Khan has contributed Rs 50,000 for this wedding too.

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