Days after Tina Dabi announced her engagement to the second rank holder Athar Aamir-ul-Shafi, the Akhil Bhartiya Hindu Mahasabha has said that while they were proud of the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) topper's achievements, it was ‘painful’ that she chose to marry a Muslim.
In a letter to her parents, Munna Kumar Sharma, the national general secretary Hindu right wing outfit, described Tina's relationship with Athar as ‘love jihad’.
According to Sabrang India, Munna Kumar Sharma said that Athar should first be convinced for a ‘ghar-wapisi’, which means converting to Hinduism.
The Financial Express said that the letter called for `proper thought` to the proposed marriage and urged Tina’s parents to join force against the ‘conspiracy’.
Speaking from the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy for Administration here, Tina had earlier told The Times of India that love between the two “blossomed in a very sarkari set-up”.
Tina and Athar met at the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) office in North Block for a felicitation function on May 11.
"We met in the morning and by evening Aamir was at my door. Uske liye pehli nazar mein pyaar ho gaya (For him, it was love at first sight)", she said.
She confessed her love in August.
When asked about the criticism she faces on doing so, Dabi said: "We are in love and very happy . But I must admit that I get very disturbed when I read stuff about us. We have stopped googling our names and reading news about ourselves. I think it is a small price to pay for being in the public eye."
"As any freethinking independent woman, I am entitled to certain choices. I am very happy with my choice and so is Aamir. Our parents are happy too. But there will always be those elements, that small minority who will always pass negative comments about dating someone from another religion. It is just that 5%. The majority are very happy . You would have seen on my Facebook timeline that most of the comments are encouraging. In fact, I am overwhelmed by the support and congratulatory messages. I thought "yeh to achcha hai" (this is good.)"
"There have been a lot of comments attributed to me falsely . Then there are comments that are anti-caste, targeting reservations, religion. It's as if I have committed a crime by falling in love with someone who is not the same religion or caste as me. Things do become offensive. I then wonder if I should be active on social media and confront such stuff. But then I tell myself that I don't have to prove anything to anyone," she said.
While 22-year-old Delhi girl Tina Dabi topped the UPSC, Athar Aamir-ul Shafi Khan of Jammu and Kashmir finished second nationally. He was also the only Muslim in the top 100 successful candidates.
Dabi, who studied at Delhi's Lady Shri Ram College, cleared the exam - considered one of the toughest in the country - in her first attempt and also topped it.
For Khan, who hails from Anantnag in Kashmir, it was his second attempt. In his first attempt in 2014, he had got a lower rank and could not make it to the top administrative jobs and had to be content with the Indian Railway Traffic Service (IRTS).