Actor Chemban Vinod Jose and his new bride Mariyam had become victims of online trolling when the news of their wedding came out. This is Chemban's second marriage; besides the bride is just twenty five years old. These were enough for the social media to have a field day.
However, Chemban and Mariyam ignored the negative comments and are enjoyed the lockdown period in each other’s company. The actor asks whether there is a written law that states that there should be a stipulated age difference between the husband and wife. “Can anyone say that an individual who is twenty five years old do not have the capacity to take their own decisions in life? It is fine even if you do not like us; but isn’t it just weird to poke your nose into someone else’s lives?” asks Chemban in his quintessential humorous style.
Age was definitely not a factor when Mariyam decided to say ‘I do’ to Chemban. It was at a wedding function that she and Chemban met for the first time. She was working at Kochi after completing her studies from Pune. “We shared an amazing friendship. Later, we began thinking about spending our lives with each other. I had always dreamed that my life partner should be someone who understands me well,” says Mariyam.
Mariyam is seventeen years younger to Chemban. But age never became a barrier when they realized that they were perfect for each other. “I and Chemban are compatible. I can speak openly about anything to him. I wasn’t willing to lose him just because he is a couple of years older to me,” Mariyam makes her stand clear.
The couple had decided to get married in a small and intimate ceremony. They had even submitted an application at the register office. Besides, their families had planned to arrange a small get together on 21 March. “It must be from the register office that the news our wedding got leaked. However, what struck the journalist’s eyes may have been our ages. So, instead of running the story as ‘Chemban getting married’ they published it under the title ’43 year old Chemban to get hitched to 23-year-old Mariyam’. The common people wouldn’t feel great about something like this. This is the problem of their attitude,” notes the actor.
Chemban suspects the journalist may have tried to ‘torpedo’ their plan thinking that he had eloped with Mariyam without her family’s consent. But, the actor says this has only turned in their favor. Both the families were worried that the public wouldn't feel great about something like this owing to their attitude. But more than those who criticized, the netizens were happy for their favorite actor and they showered congratulatory messages. “Even those who do not know me personally called to wish us. So, we are grateful to that blessed soul who actually leaked the news,” laughs Chemban.
In Chemban’s own words, theirs wasn’t a typical courtship at all. “Our friendship gradually grew into love. We understood each other perfectly. We began thinking about marriage when we felt that this was a mutual feeling. It was only after marriage that we actually started discussing about who felt love first. However, we promptly stopped that discussion when we felt that it may soon lead to a conflict. It doesn’t matter who confessed love first, the fact is that both of us are ‘trapped’ in this together,” says the actor.
Meanwhile, Mariyam says both of them wish to live with a sense of independence and enjoy giving space to each other. “People have been saying that Chemban was an alcoholic. There were rumors that he is bit aggressive as well. I know Chemban consumes alcohol. But, he is not an addict who cannot survive without consuming alcohol. It was a misunderstanding that was created after he gave a few interviews. Besides, it is better to be a bit aggressive whenever it is needed,” smiles Mariyam.
“Mariyam has many wonderful qualities which I admire. All those unique qualities are making me incredibly happier as well. Shouldn’t we spent our lives with someone like that?” asks Chemban.
Chemban and Mariyam entered wedlock with the blessings of both their families. They had initially decided to tie the knot when the lockdown would be lifted as they wanted their close families to attend the function. But, they would have to put in another application if they weren’t married within May 5. So, the couple married in a low-key ceremony during the lockdown period itself.
Chemban reveals that many people had tried to dissuade them and their respective families from this marriage. “Some people even asked my parents whether it was right for me to marry such a young girl. But my parents told them that I have been alone for quite some time and I should live with the person I like,” reveals Chemban.
“Even if we wish to make others say good things about us, it is not possible to live by satisfying everyone. But, both of us can make each other happy without creating any problems for the society. Moreover, Mariyam is a psychologist by profession. Some people say that actors would go crazy after a certain age. In case that is true, I can save significant amount of money as she would treat me,” laughs Chemban.
The actor admits that they got married at the register office in Angamaly after having a fight about breakfast on the day of their wedding. “At the register office, my close friends Lijo Jose Pellisery, Anson Antony and Sreejith were eagerly waiting for us. After signing on the marriage register, we came to my house. As I am an alcohol ‘addict’, we opened the bottles that I had stocked up and celebrated. That was in fact our wedding function,” Chemban signs off.