Coronavirus, officials, spoil Italian couple’s Indian wedding dream
After 20 years in a relationship, an Italian couple chose to get married according to the Hindu rituals in Bikaner, but coronavirus outbreak put paid to their plans as they along with their friends and family were told to return to Delhi while on the way to Bikaner.
Andrea Belli, 56, and Antonella Scano, 50, visited Bikaner as early as February last year to finalise the venue, a music band, dinner for about 150 guests, a priest and a mare for the wedding scheduled for March 7 this year.
The couple and the rest of the wedding party landed in Jaipur on March 3 and, after a stay of two days here, which included shopping for the bride to be, they headed for Bikaner on March 5.
“On our way to Bikaner, we were told that the Italians need to return to Delhi and report to the deputy chief mission at the Italian Embassy. We were told that the state government had told all district collectors to push back Italians,” said Mahendra Singh Shekhawat of Hotel Kishan Palace, where the grooms’ side was scheduled to stay.
Shekhawat was travelling with the Italians from Jaipur to Bikaner.
The instruction Shekhawat referred to had been issued on March 4 by the department of medical and health.
The couple and their relatives had no option but to cancel the wedding and return home. Meanwhile, the health department order was withdrawn and the additional chief secretary of health the department, Rohit Kumar Singh, said it was due to an “inadvertent communication gap”.
The revised order reads: “There were no instructions of Government of India (GoI) to advise tourists from Italy to go back to Delhi and contact the embassy. The GoI directions were only meant to ask the Italian nationals to contact their DCM, in case they were facing any difficulty or anxiety on account of their 17 compatriots, who travelled in Rajasthan during February 21-28, having tested positive for COVID-19.”
Belli’s sister, Paola Belli, who has a Portuguese passport, came to Bikaner to clear the dues.
“My brother and his finance, both lawyers, decided to tie the nuptial knot in Bikaner according to the Indian customs and traditions. All the wedding ceremonies including Mehendi, Yagopaveet (sacred thread), Baarat, Jaimal, Phere and Kanya-Daan were planned in traditional manner but it all got spoiled,” she said.
She said she was upset. “I am very upset because the dreams of the couple were ruined due to the misunderstanding and confusion amongst the Indian authorities,” she said.
Paola Belli said from the ancient time, Indian culture, customs and traditions have left an impression on foreigners and a large number of Europeans and Americans have been so much inspired by Indian culture that many of them have solemnised marriage as per Indian rituals and traditions.
Source: Hindustan Times
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