HD Kumaraswamy had thought his son Nikhil Gowda”s wedding on Friday would, fortunately, fall on a date when the nationwide lockdown would be over. But fate had something else in store for the wedding, which the former Karnataka chief minister has now moved to a farmhouse near Bidadi of the Ramanagara district due to the extension of the lockdown, his aide said on 15 April.
“Nikhil”s wedding has been moved to the Kumaraswamy farmhouse at Kethaganahalli near Bidadi from Bengaluru due to lockdown extension and cancellation of marriages and religious functions in the state,” his media secretary KC Sadananada told IANS.
“As the lockdown is enforced to contain the coronavirus spread, the marriage will be a private event, with only family members and close relatives in attendance,” said Sadananda.
Nikhil, 28, got engaged to Revathi, 22, grandniece of Karnataka Congress politician M Krishnappa, at an upmarket hotel in Bengaluru on 10 February. They had scheduled for 17 April a grand wedding at Janapadaloka between Ramanagaram and Chennapatna on the state highway to Mysuru.
“When the 21-day lockdown was enforced on March 25, the families decided to hold the wedding at Krishnappa”s house here, hoping it (lockdown) will be lifted on April 14. Its extension and declaring Bengaluru as a Covid hotspot forced to shift it again to the farmhouse,” said Sadananda.
Not everybody is impressed. Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister CN Ashwath Naraya said, “We will ask the concerned authority to film the entire event and document it. If they violate the #COVID19 lockdown guidelines, the government will take action without any second thought.”
Kumaraswamy has but taken the state government”s permission to conduct the wedding. He has reportedly pledged to comply with all norms such as wearing masks, sanitising hands and social distancing.
Nikhil”s grandfather JD(S) head and former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda, grandmother Chennamma, uncles, including former minister HD Revanna, cousin and Hassan Lok Sabha member Prajwal Hegde and other family members will be present to bless him and bride Revathi.
“Kumaraswamy has urged party”s leaders, cadres and supporters to bless the couple from their respective houses and not to flock to the farmhouse due to the lockdown. He has promised to hold a grand reception at the original venue on a suitable date after summer when normalcy returns,” added Sadananda.
The local police have made security arrangements around the farmhouse to prevent crowding although Ramanagara district is a green spot, with not a single COVID case till date.
Contesting the Mandya Lok Sabha seat in the May 2017 general elections in his maiden electoral bid, Nikhil, a rising bilingual (Kannada/Telugu) star, had, however, lost to south Indian actress Sumalatha Ambareesh, an Independent.