Last updated: 26 february, 2010 - 16:19 GMT

Fighting for her marriage

Kavita and her son

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Kavita is fighting to save her marriage after a council of village elders ruled it should be annulled.

In certain parts of India like Haryana arranged marriages are the norm. Tales of clandestine weddings and couples determined to choose who they will marry are not unusual.

But that was not the case for Kavita and her husband Satish. They married quite openly three years ago and they have a child.

Recently, a powerful council of village elders decided their marriage should be annulled. They were told to start living as brother and sister because they belonged to 'gotras' or clans which cannot intermarry under local Hindu customs.

Husband Satish

Husband Satish

But Kavita refused to accept this decision and fought back, insisting she will stay with her husband.

Her defiance may have paid off, but at a price. While a higher council has over-ruled the original decision, the local community are still up in arms. She and her family are now living in hiding under police protection.

The BBC's Suhail Haleem reports for Outlook.

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