‘Novel Initiative of Meghwal Community’
Udaipur : In a bid to encourage families to refrain themselves from spending too much on marriage functions in the household, the Meghwal samaj in Udaipur has come up with a novel idea. The Samaj has announced to extend free honey moon trips if 51 couples agree to get ‘tied-up’ in the mass wedding ceremony to be held in February next year. The purpose is dual- one to reduce the utilization of resources and second to help families cope in the present phase of demonetization. It also aims to increase awareness among the youths on the benefits of mass weddings. The community had last year gifted ‘helmets’ to the newly weds in support of the governments’ road safety campaign.
“ We have so far organized three mass weddings for our people and inspite of much publicity and awareness attempts people still hesitate to get their children married off in collective functions” said Prakash Meghwal, the prachar mantra of Meghwal Samaj here. Prakash had got his siblings married in a similar function held by the community. There are lot of benefits of samuhik vivah which everyone understands but since hosting lavish ceremonies are considered as status symbol, people specially from the upper middle class, just preach about it but hardly participate, Prakash said. The strength of Meghwal community in Udaipur is believed to be around 20 thousand and there are many girls and boys of marriageable age.
“In the three mass weddings held so far only 20 couples had participated. We charge 25,000 rupees from the groom’s party and 23,000 rupees from the bride’s side to make arrangements for the wedding. Besides a community feast for over five thousand people, we also give a complete gift hamper for the newly weds including furniture and utensils set for their new household” said Ganeshlal, president of Udaipur Meghwal samaj. According to the office bearers, it costs around 8 to 10 lakhs to host a mass-wedding and both the bride and groom party share the expenditure. Whereas individual weddings costs double, thus laying much burden on the bride’s family.