A young lesbian couple reunited by a court in the southern Indian state of Kerala have said they still fear threats from their families.
Adhila Nassrin, 22, had filed a court petition after alleging her partner had been abducted by her family.
The court ruled on Monday that Nassrin and her partner Fathima Noora, 23, were free to live together.
The couple said they were “ecstatic” about the order but that they still aren’t “completely free”.
Members of the LGBT community still largely face prejudice and hostility in India despite a landmark court order that decriminalised gay sex in 2018.
While the country does have a spirited, vibrant movement for queer rights, its impact has been most visible in big cities.
Nassrin and Noora have told local media that they met and fell in love while studying in Saudi Arabia.
While they had been together for several years, they only told their families about their relationship last month.
“We felt suffocated all these years at our homes,” Noora told a news channel on Tuesday.
But the couple said they faced strong opposition from their families after they disclosed their relationship.
They then took refuge at Vanaja Collective, a shelter for LGBTQ people and other marginalised communities, in Kozhikode district in northern Kerala.
They agreed to accompany Nassrin’s parents back home after being promised they would come to no harm, the couple said.
But a few days later, they allege, Noora’s family forcibly took her away.
Nassrin then filed a police complaint and approached the court, asking permission for the two women to live together.
On Tuesday, Noora appeared in court and said she wanted to be with her partner.
Reports said that the court ruled in their favour within minutes.
In 2018, the Kerala high court said another lesbian couple could live together after one of them alleged her partner had been forcibly detained by her family.
After the ruling, Nassrin told The Quint that the process had been “tough” and they were emotionally drained.
“We knew we would have to struggle to be together,” Noora told a local TV channel.
“But what we didn’t expect was the kind of support we received from the media, from the court, and several people,” she added.