In January, an Indian man was arrested for helping a Pakistani woman enter the country illegally and obtain a false ID.
The woman he was helping was his wife.
Mulayam Singh Yadav, 21, and Iqra Jeewani, 19, met and fell in love online three years ago while playing Ludo.
But they knew that it would be difficult for them to be together.
Relations between India and Pakistan are tense – the neighboring countries have fought three wars since 1947, when India was partitioned at independence and Pakistan was created. This can make it difficult to obtain visas.
So, in September last year, Molaim and Iqra traveled to Nepal, where they got married.
After that, they went to the Indian city of Bangalore, the capital of Karnataka, and began to live together.
But the couple’s happiness did not last long. In January, Jeewani was arrested for entering India illegally, and Yadav was arrested on charges of fraud, forgery and providing shelter to a foreign national without proper documents.
She was deported to Pakistan last week. Yadav remains in jail in Bangalore.
The Yadav family, who live in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, were devastated by the results. They say the couple’s story is simply a love story.
“We want them back home,” says his brother Jitlal.
“We understand the situation between India and Pakistan. But all they have done is fall in love.”
Even the police seem to agree.
“Apart from illegal entry and forgery, it appears to be a love story,” said a senior Bangalore police official who requested anonymity.
“We’ll take good care of her.”
The couple’s love story began in 2020, during the lockdown imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Yadav worked as a security guard for an IT company in Bangalore, while Jewani was a student in the Pakistani city of Hyderabad.
The two began a long distance relationship after meeting online. But Jiwani was under increasing family pressure to marry.
On Yadav’s suggestion, she leaves Pakistan and travels to Nepal via Dubai to meet him. Police say the two married in a Hindu ceremony and then headed to India.
But Jiwani did not have the necessary documents to stay in India. Then, according to the police, Yadav could have obtained an Aadhaar, a fake Indian identity document, for her.
The police further alleged that Yadav went out every day for work, while Jewani stayed at home.
But she frequently made WhatsApp calls to her mother in Pakistan, which led the police to her.
Bangalore police said they were on high alert last month because two major international events were scheduled to take place in the city in February: the Aero India airshow and a meeting of G20 finance ministers.
After further investigation, Jiwani was transferred to the Provincial Aliens Registration Office on January 20. She was deported to Pakistan in February.
“So far, no charges have been filed against her other than entering the country illegally,” Deputy Commissioner of Police in Whitefield district of Bangalore told BBCS Girish.
But the investigation is underway.”
The BBC was unable to reach Jiwani or her family in Pakistan for comment.
Earlier this week, news agency PTI reported that her father had confirmed his daughter had arrived home — and that they didn’t want to “talk about it.”
Shanti Devi, Yadav’s mother, says she hopes the governments of both countries will help bring the couple back together.
“We don’t care if she’s Muslim or Pakistani, she’s our daughter-in-law. We’ll take good care of her.”
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