The founder of Pakistan, Muhammad Ali Jinnah had no choice but to shave off his moustache. At the age of 40, he proposed to Ruttie Petit and the only condition put forth by the bride-to-be was, "Shave your moustache." Jinnah not just obliged to shave off his moustache, but also re-did his hair to impress the lady.
In her new book, Mr and Mrs Jinnah- The marriage that shook India,' senior journalist, Sheela Reddy speaks about the Jinnah's unhappy marriage with the Parsi girl who was 24 years younger to him.
While delivering a lecture about her book, she said, "When he proposed, the only condition she put was you have to shave off his moustache. He obliged, and got married without his moustache. And he also redid his hairstyle. This was very very English movie at that time, and all the Parsi dudes were doing that."
She narrates an incident where Jinnah was having a conversation with Ruttie's father, Dinshaw Maneckji Petit. Jinnah asked him about his views on inter-communal marriage. Dinshaw said, "This would be a great thing for the integration of the country." Jinnah immediately said, " I want to marry your daughter." He was immediately shown the door.
Jinnah had to wait another two years since at that time Ruttie, short for Rattan Bai was only 16 at that time. As soon as she turned 18, the marriage took place at the Jinnah House in Bombay in 1918. None of her family members attended the wedding.