By Mohammed Irshad / The News Minute

Shamsheena (22), a Muslim, and Kavya (21), a Hindu, became friends four years ago while working at a garment shop. They live in Karnataka’s Dakshina Kannada district in Golthadi and Ramnagar villages, around 20 km apart, respectively. They visit each others’ homes frequently and their families are also acquainted.

On July 12, the second day of Eid ul Adha, Shamsheena invited Kavya for a biryani feast. What followed has left both the women and their families shocked and revealed the efforts by Hindutva groups to actively discourage inter-community relations.

Usually, Kavya’s brother would drop her at Shamsheena’s home. But on that day, he had some other engagement and dropped Kavya mid-way to Shamsheena’s house, at Uppinangady town. Shamsheena came to pick her up from there. They got on a bus and travelled to Athoor town, where they got down to buy chicken. Then they hired an autorickshaw to go home.

On the way home, they noticed that another auto was following them. About five minutes away from their home, they got down from the auto – the diver said he had something else to attend to. The second auto – which had no passengers – continued to follow them. They also noticed that some men were following them on two-wheelers. When they stopped at a shop, they found a man gazing at them “oddly”.

After they reached Shamsheena’s home, more than 20-30 people associated with the Bajrang Dal gathered a few metres away.

At around 1 pm, three police officers (two males and one lady) arrived at the Shamsheena’s home. They asked for her brother Ziyad. They told the cops that he was not there.

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