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Karnataka: Couple booked for printing 'make PM Modi win again' in wedding invitation

A wedding invitation in Karnataka sparked controversy as it urged guests to support Prime Minister Narendra Modi's reelection. Though printed before the election code, it led to legal trouble for the couple. Despite clarifications from the groom, a case was filed against the printing company owner. The incident ignited debates on free speech and political expression at personal events.

Karnataka: Couple booked for printing 'make PM Modi win again' in wedding invitation vkp
First Published Apr 28, 2024, 10:16 AM IST

A wedding invitation in Karnataka has sparked a heated debate after the groom's plea to "make Prime Minister Narendra Modi win again" landed the couple in legal trouble. The invitation, printed before the enforcement of the election code of conduct, has stirred controversy, leading to a police case against the couple.

The marriage of Shivaprasad, the son of late Shivappa Gowda, from Alanthaya village in Kadaba taluk, and his bride from Kolamba village in Haleneranki village, Kadaba taluk, was celebrated at the Golitottu Siddhivinayak Kala Mandir on the 18th of April. However, it's not the vows exchanged that have drawn attention but rather the contents of their wedding invitation.

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Printed on March 1st, the invitation bore a message from Shivaprasad, urging guests to consider making Narendra Modi the Prime Minister again as a gift to the newlyweds. While the printing and distribution occurred before the Election Code came into effect, officials of the Election Code of Conduct Enforcement Monitoring Team raised concerns, prompting an inquiry.

According to reports, 800 invitation letters were printed, with only ten remaining undistributed by the time officials visited the groom's residence on the 14th of April. Shivaprasad clarified that the message was written out of admiration for Modi and concern for the nation, with no intent to breach the law. He provided a written statement affirming his innocence and requesting no legal action be taken.

Despite the wedding taking place on the 18th of April and voting concluding on the 26th, a complaint was lodged with the Uppinangadi police after the election. Subsequently, a case was registered against the owner of the printing company responsible for the invitations.

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Expressing confusion and frustration, Shivaprasad stated that he fails to comprehend the alleged crimes, emphasizing his desire for a capable leader like Modi for the nation's welfare. He suspects external pressure may have prompted the complaint but maintains his innocence, asserting that he harbours no guilt.

As the legal proceedings unfold, Shivaprasad hopes that those who perceive the wedding gift differently would understand his sentiments and intentions, echoing his wish for leaders worthy of divine favour. The incident has ignited debates on freedom of expression, election ethics, and the intersection of personal celebrations with political sentiments, drawing attention from various quarters.

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