What would you do if Karl Marx, Lenin, Ho Chi Minh attended the wedding of Friedrich Engels in Kerala? The Communist Wedding, as people are calling it, really happened in Kerala’s Athirapally region. The couple, Friedrich Engels and Bismitha hosted a private ceremony at the Athirapilly Panchayat Community Hall.
The groom was named after Friedrich Engels, the iconic figure who co-authored the Communist Manifesto with Karl Marx. Not only that, the groom’s brother and friends, Lenin, Ho Chi Minh and Marx were part of the wedding. Yes, they too were named after the legends. Marx had to fly from Dubai to attend the wedding.
In an interview with the New Indian Express, Friedrich Engels shared, “Every family here is a staunch follower of the Communist party. My dad Thomas and the father of Marx and Ho Chi Minh, Ouseph, have been friends and neighbours. They were die-hard Communists and followed the ideology to the letter.”
Engels has been a member of the Athirapilly CPM committee for the past 12 years. He had been with the SFI growing up. It was their influence that instilled the communist blood within him.
The wedding ceremonies, too, were one-of-a-kind. CPM local committee secretary KS Satheesh Kumar was the one who sent out the invites to the guests. Chalakkudy CPM area secretary KS Asokan shared a moment with the couple on stage by handing over the ceremonial garlands to them.
The family of the groom is greatly inspired by the hammer and sickle power and had to pass it on to their children. Thus, the proud Communist family had to host a Communist wedding.
Naming children after iconic leaders behind Communism isn’t uncommon in Kerala. Mundanmani Ouseph, the former President of the Athirappilly panchayat and a CPIM activist, named his two sons Marx and Ho Chi Minh. Thomas, inspired by Mundanmani Ouseph, went on to name his sons Engels and Lenin, both of whom are CPIM activists now. In fact, Tamil Nadu’s present chief minister’s name was named after the Soviet dictator, Stalin.