21-year-old Shivam Kumar, who recently cleared the recruitment examination for General Duty (GD) service in the Indian Army, was allegedly kidnapped on gunpoint in Lakhisarai district of Bihar and forced to marry a girl at a nearby village on Thursday morning.
Shivam Kumar's father Manoj Kumar alleged that his son was abducted at gunpoint by some youths, who came in a SUV (sports utility vehicle). He told police that his son's friends, who were out on a stroll with him in the morning, witnessed the incident and informed his family. According to the police complaint, Shivam had been selected for the GD post in army and was readying for movement to Hyderabad.
The incident took place at around 6.30 am at Gangasarai village under Barahiya police station of Lakhisarai district.
Irate residents of Gangasarai blocked the Lakhisarai-Patna main road, disrupting traffic for three hours, demanding recovery of the abducted youth and stern action against the culprits. The residents claimed that the Bihar police was only interested in seizing liquor, while general policing had gone for a toss.
Sub divisional police officer (SDPO) Ranjan Kumar reached the spot with other policemen and tried to pacify the mob.
Soon pictures of Shivam, in a nuptial knot with a woman, went viral on social media. Police swung into action and rescued the youth from Sikandra police station area in the Jamui district.
Lakhisarai SP Sunil Kumar said that Shivam was rescued by the police within four hours of his abduction, however, no arrest had been made till the filing of this report.
The police were conducting raids at possible hideouts of the accused.
Shivam was picked up and taken to a Lord Shiva temple situated at Simaria in Jamui, where he was wedded forcefully, said police.
'Pakadua Vivah' or forced marriage is a regular occurrence in the region, say cops. Such cases were reported mainly from Munger, Nawada, Khagaria and Begusarai districts, where prospective bride grooms are kidnapped for marriage.
Earlier on December 14, one Vikash Kumar was allegedly abducted from Banarsi Chowk under Rajapakar police station of Vaishali district. His father Parmanand Rai lodged a complaint against three persons for abduction and forced marriage. A similar incident was reported from Jehanabad, where a minor was abducted from the town bus stand on December 14 and forced to marry a woman. A case has been registered with the town police station in this connection.
Officials in the police headquarters revealed that more than 25 persons were abducted for marriages in the two months of November and December 2020.
Forced wedding was a common practice in some areas of Bihar but it declined following government initiatives to curb the malice and police acting against people abducting eligible bachelors for marriages to avoid paying dowry.
Statistics available with the state crime record bureau revealed that altogether 6,517 cases of forced marriages have been reported in the state in 2020.
4,498 cases were registered in 2019 and 4,301 cases were registered in 2018 compared to 3,678 in 2017 and 3,070 cases in 2016. In 2015, 3,000 cases were registered while 2,526 cases were registered in 2014.