Ma Hai Guo (30) who is from the Sichuan province of China married Pallavi Gautam (38) of Chandkheda in Ahmedab…Read More
AHMEDABAD: The chill in Sino-Indian ties has not affected this Chinese man who is protected by the Amdavadi warmth of a neighbourhood that considers him a ‘son-inlaw’.
Ma Hai Guo, 30, is from the Sichuan province of China. He married Pallavi Gautam, 38, of Chandkheda in December 2016.
Ma, who adopted the Indian name ‘Mahi’, has been living with Gautam in her Chandkheda flat since January.
The tensions escalated between the two countries following the Galwan Valley face-off on June 16. But Gautam’s housing society members are keeping the individual-level love away from the intricacies of international relationships.
“Mahi is our jamai and we will protect and serve him”: This is the sentiment of many residents of the society.
Gautam had served as an interpreter to Ma when he toured Ahmedabad in 2015 as an employee of a Chinese cellphone company. Love was not lost in translation. He and Gautam married according to Buddhist rituals next year.
After marriage, couple moved to Sichuan
After marriage, the couple moved to Sichuan. But when coronavirus began spreading in China rapidly, the couple moved to Ahmedabad in January. As the Covid situation was about to normalize, the Galwan standoff occurred.
“But during both crises, my family and society members helped me and my husband live peacefully here in the city,” said Gautam.
The society members are solicitous in caring for Ma. They use online translating tools to communicate with him. Some members even accompany him when he ventures out of the society.
For his part, Ma plays with the kids of the society and teaches Mandarin to those who want to learn.
Gautam’s neighbour Apurva Parmar, 18, said Ma is good natured. “We hang out with him because he is affable and cooperative,” said Parmar. “We reciprocate his friendliness and ensure that he doesn’t feel isolated in a foreign country.”