A Saudi Arabian groom walked out of his wedding, cancelling the same after his prospective father-in-law demanded his daughter be allowed to drive after marriage.

The incident was reported less than two weeks after Saudi Arabia announced Sept. 26 that it will be lifting the ban on women’s driving, to be effective from June 2018.

The change in law was welcomed by the rest of the world, since the kingdom was the only country in the world where women faced prison time if caught behind the wheels of a moving vehicle.

President Donald Trump had congratulated the Saudi Arabian authorities for taking the step. "President Donald J. Trump commends the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's decision today to affirm the right of women to drive in the kingdom," a White House statement read."This is a positive step toward promoting the rights and opportunities of women in Saudi Arabia."

Hence, it came as a shock to many when the same modification in the law was considered a deal breaker for a Saudi Arabian groom.

In spite of agreeing to a dowry of 40,000 riyals ($10,666) and the fact that his future wife would be gainfully employed after marriage, the groom walked out of his wedding ceremony when the bride’s father demanded his daughter get a driving license after the ban on women’s driving was lifted and be allowed to drive after marriage, Albawaba reported. 

Saudi Arabia A Saudi Arabian groom walked out of his wedding, cancelling the same because his father-in-law demanded that his future wife be allowed to drive, In this photo, a Palestinian young woman attends a driving Lesson in Gaza City, on Feb. 29, 2016. Photo: Getty Images/ MAHMUD HAMS

The groom was shocked by the demand since the same was not discussed prior to the wedding. Just minutes before the couple was going to be joined in matrimony, the bride's father surprised him with the demand.

The groom rejected the last-minute request by his future father-in-law and stormed off before the wedding ceremony was scheduled to begin, leaving his family behind.

Although he left instructions for his cousins not to send his fiancée’s family home on an empty stomach, he did not participate in the ceremonial feast himself.

Although the relatives of the groom tried to change his mind, he refused to pay heed to any persuasions, Khaleej Times reported. 

The instance was an example of the conservative mentality that still pervades Saudi Arabian society, despite attempts by some of its leaders to lead the kingdom on a more modern path. King Salman’s decree which lifted the ban on women drivers was met with considerable backlash from religious hardliners.

Conservative clerics in Saudi Arabia have been known to oppose lifting the ban on women’s driving because otherwise, according to them, women of the kingdom will become increasingly promiscuous. One cleric even claimed at the time that letting women drive would have a negative impact on their ovaries, making it difficult for them to bear children.

However, women activists in Saudi Arabia have rallied for the ban to be lifted for a long time, and which was finally fulfilled last month.

Authorities have taken the period of just under a year to expand licensing facilities and properly develop infrastructure to handle millions of new car drivers.